Saturday, March 10, 2007

Notary advice

You are going to get to know a notary all too well! We were very fortunate to have a friend that was a notary and she sat down with us in one night and we went through page after page notarizing everything! Ask around- you might be able to find someone to do this for you for free and it could end up saving you a lot of money. Another place to check with is your bank. Some banks offer free notary service to anyone that has an account with them. Our bank, Washington Mutual, would not notarize anything unless it was a bank document. I am pretty sure Bank of America does this for free for their customers and there are probably many other banks that do as well. Again, it could save you a lot of money to take the time to ask!

UPDATE 3/28/07: I just learned that AAA members (even non-members) can receive cheap notary services. Here are the fees for each of the different memberships: Premier Member-FREE, AAA plus $4, Classic membership $7, and non-members can even use this service for as little as $10!

Some notary tips:

Make sure that the notary's commission does not expire in the next 12 months or longer. If it's about to expire you could end up not being able to use that document/notary later in the process. Better safe then sorry. The notary should hand write or stamp something along these lines on your document:

State of _____
County of _______
Sworn to and subscribed before me this ___th day of ________ by (your names here).

It should, of course, also include the notary's stamp and signature.

Helpful hint: A friend that has adopted many times from Haiti gave me this wonderful tip and we have not had any problems with it (or her as far as we know of). If you have a document already signed that was not signed in front of a notary--- like a reference letter from a friend. Write at the bottom of the document:

This is a true, exact, and complete copy of the original document.

Then sign that statement in front of the notary!

Gathering your dossier can be a very busy and stressful time. Try to have as much of your paperwork ready to notarize before making a trip to your notary. The fewer trips you make will save you time and stress.

1 comment:

james said...

We received our medical letter and lab test results back, but now need to get them notorized. How do we do this without having the doctor there in person to sign in front of the notary. What is it the notary is notarizing on those documents that they do not witness being signed? Are they just notarizing that they are true, unaltered copies?