Power of Attorney

One of the most common mobile notary requests that I receive is for a Power of Attorney. This document is extremely important and therefore I always preface the mobile notary requests with several questions.

First, I inquire whether the signer is able to sign their name. This might seem like an odd question however many people are often ill and aging which could affect their ability to sign their name. If the individual is unable to sign their name a special type of notary must be performed which requires two witnesses. This notary is called a Signature by Mark. The signer in this situation would make some form of a mark or an x on the documents before notarization would take place.

Second, is the signer conscious and aware of what they are signing? This is important because it is the job of a notary to prevent fraud in terms of identity falsification. Another important element of the Power of Attorney is to ensure that the signer is not being coerced into to signing. The signer might be out of sorts due to surgery or medication. I also will inquire regarding the signer’s condition if they are ill or recovering from surgery.

Third, does the signer have a valid form of ID. This would be any type of ID such as a Passport, Senior Identification Card, or Driver’s License. If they do have an identification, then I inquire if the ID is current. If the ID is expired within the last five years in the state of California then it is still acceptable for the notary to use.

Lastly, there are some basic key terms that you will encounter on a Power of Attorney. The person who is giving Power of Attorney is called the Principal. The person who is receiving Power of Attorney is called the Agent.

  Loan Signing 101

Often as a Mobile Notary when I am performing a loan signing, the signer has many important basic questions regarding their loan documents. The process of buying, selling, or refinancing a property can be very stressful for a lot of people. I am always happy as a Mobile Notary and Loan Signing Agent to guide the borrower or seller through the loan documents and assist in any way that I can to help the process be easier.

I thought I would write a blog to help assist and educate buyers and sellers on some fundamental documents in the loan signing package and some loan signing terms. Many of these documents require a notary and the loan signing terms below are often listed in almost all loan documents.

 

Note- A note is simply a contract. This will state what the borrower is borrowing and show the interest rate of the loan, will state the payment amount and the term of the loan.

Interest Rate- This is what the borrower of the loan agrees to pay back the bank on the money that is borrowed. The higher the risk, the higher the rate. The lower the risk the lower the rate.

Property tax- These are taxes that are due to the county where the property is located. Most property taxes are due twice a year.

Deed- This very important document records the owner of the property. It always goes thorough the County Recorder’s Office and will always be notarized. You will also find other information on the Deed such as the lien amount, who is lending the money, the legal description of the property, and any rules and regulations that the property owner has to follow.

 

Grant Deed- This is used to sale or transfer real property from one person or entity to another person or entity. This is another important document that gets recorded at the County Recorder’s Office and will require notarization. The Grantor is the name of the person or entity transferring the property and the Grantee is the name of the person or entity that the property is being transferred to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

             Travel Documents for Minors Who Are Traveling

 

A document that I am often asked to notarize is a Permission to Travel document for a minor. Often a child is only traveling with one parent and therefore the other parent must have a Permission to Travel form filled out and notarized. Often the U.S. customs will ask for documentation and if the document is not notarized the permission letter could result in a denial to the entry of the country. If the child is traveling with an adult other than their parents, both parents must provide a written permission to travel form. This is a common mobile notary request.

A permission to travel form can be accessed on line. Notary law in California requires the signer to sign before the notary. And the signer must provide the notary with a valid form of ID such as a driver’s license or passport. The permission to travel form will often require a California Acknowledgment or a California Jurat.  Questions sometimes arise when notarizing this type of document. The signer should always contact the company or entity that is requiring the document to be signed and notarized. Often the rules and regulations regarding the form can vary from entity to entity. For example, a certain airline may require a notarized form. Also depending on the destination of the country one is traveling to, that country may require a notarized form as well.

With summertime approaching, I expect to perform many mobile notaries for this type a form. And I am always happy to help especially in last minute situations.

Power of Attorney

 

A Power of Attorney is the most requested document that I receive to be notarized. A Power of Attorney is an extremely important document that requires a notary. There are many requirements that need to be in place before a Power of Attorney is notarized.

 

I always prequalify the Power of Attorney notary appointment with the following questions.

  1. Does that signer have a valid form of ID, such as Driver’s License or Passport? If so, are they current or expired within the last five years?
  2. Is the signer of the Power of Attorney conscious and aware of what they are signing?
  3. Is the signer able to write their name?
  4. What is the age of the signer?
  5. What is the optimum time to perform the notary if the signer is ill or being hospitalized, taking into consideration that certain medications or recent procedures can leave the signer less prepared to sign with full cognition?

 

One might be wondering why all of these questions for a Mobile Notary for a Power of Attorney?  The answer is, my job as a notary first and foremost is to prevent fraud. Being that the Power of Attorney grants a person to manage your affairs if you are unable to do so, it is vitally important that these questions are addressed. Some Power of Attorneys deal with financial and business matters. Other types deal with health and other legal matters.

 

It is of grave importance that the signer is not being coerced into signing the Power of Attorney. If their health is failing or they just had surgery, it is important that they are aware of what they are signing.

 

If they are ill or injured, as a notary I need to know if they are able to sign their name. If they are unable to sign, I would need to execute a different type of notary called a Signature by Mark in which two credible witness would have to be in place in order for the Power of Attorney to be notarized.

 

Now one can see what is required and why preparation for the Power of Attorney is so vital.

 

 

 

 

DBA Form

 

There is a very common document that requires notarization these days. This form is called a Doing Business As.  DBA, which stands for “doing business as”, is an acronym to know. It signifies that an individual or company is doing business under a pseudonym. State laws govern the creation and use of DBA.

A DBA is required in order to open a bank account and receive payments in the name of your business. The County Recorder requires this form to be notarized. The DBA has to be filled out and notarized with no errors due to the fact that it is recorded with the County.

Filing for a DBA allows you to do business under a different name. Your DBA is different from your name as the business owner, and it is different from the names of any partners you have as well. In California, a DBA is sometimes referred to as a “fictitious business name,” or FBN. Even though it is called fictitious, it’s just as real as any other name for a business, whether that name refers to an individual or an organization. However, most DBA’s are utilized by sole proprietorships, especially if the business name is different than that of the owner.

The name of your business is up to you, but it needs to be properly registered with the state of California. This can be done in person in the county where you reside or you can handle it all through the mail. It must also be notarized.

Certain businesses have to pay attention to DBA’s and take the motions to file for one because when you form a business, the legal name of the business defaults to the name of the person or entity that owns the business—unless you rename and register your business with a DBA name. As a Mobile Notary, I can assist you in the process of completing your documents by notarizing them accurately.

 

Life Authorization Form

 

Recently I notarized a form for an elderly gentleman from Austria. Over the years I have seen this type of notary where a country is requesting a notary so that the person signing can receive their benefits.

The benefits that they are receiving are being given to them due to being holocaust survivors. Without a notary, they are unable to receive their pension. My job as a Mobile Notary is not to attest to their being alive, but to ensure that the person signing the document is properly identified and to prevent fraud. The role of a notary varies greatly in European societies, and in some countries a notary has a higher ranking than an attorney. However, it is of vital importance to notarize this and all documents standardly according to California notary laws.

I am always very interested in the stories behind the notary of this document. I feel as if history is sitting right next to me with a story to tell. Then again there is always a story behind every Mobile Notary. This makes my job as a Traveling Notary so worthwhile.

 

 

 

Grant Deed

 

 

Recently I received a request to perform a notary on a Grant Deed which had already been notarized improperly once. It was executed by another notary and the realtor was very upset and confused as to why the document had to be notarized again.

The name on the document read slightly differently than the name on the signer’s identification, in this case their driver’s license.

The realtor didn’t understand why Escrow needed an additional notary and required two witnesses known to the signer. I explained to her that the County Recorder is very particular because they are dealing with the transfer of property and title.

In order to prevent fraud, names have to match on all forms of identification and the paper work. When a Grant Deed is recorded the name on the Deed must match photo ID identically.

Having two credible witness is one way that can aid in fraud prevention. This is a simple and effective technique that the Mobile Notary and Loan Signing Agent must follow in order to ensure that all documents are being notarized according to notary laws.

 

I met with the signer who was a 90-year-old gentleman. Two-credible witness where there as well. I properly identified all parties, and performed the notarization of the Grant Deed. All parties where pleased including Escrow and the County Recorder was able to record the change of title.

Mobile Notary Travels Anywhere!

Recently I decided to attend a network meeting. I introduced myself to the group and stated my company is Andrea’s Mobile Notary. I explained I’m both a Mobile Notary and Loan Signing Agent who handles home loans and mortgage documents. I explained some of the documents that need notarization: Deeds, Trusts, Powers of Attorney and Loans, etc. And as a Mobile Notary I will travel anywhere. I often go to hospitals, offices, homes, nursing homes, healthcare facilities, and jails.

The reaction from the group was one of shock and surprise that I would go to prisons and jails! I said even people in prisons need a notary! They replied, thank goodness there are Mobile Notaries who are willing to take on the task of helping those who are locked up!

Later on, I got to thinking about the types of places I’ve gone to perform Mobile Notary Services. I even had to notarize a Grant Deed while a client was on her break and we had to use the trunk of my car because she couldn’t let me into her place of employment. There was a time crunch and the lender needed the loan documents sent out the same day. And this was the only time the client had.

I’ve traveled to clients’ homes and offices. One of my Mobile Notary appointments was scheduled by a personal assistant and when I arrived it was a famous actor. This actor was most known for a movie that happened to be the screensaver on my phone! He was so happy to meet a big fan of his motion picture. And I was more than happy to meet him. He gave me his autograph separate from the signature in my notary journal. And I didn’t have to notarize that!

ANDREA
https://mobilenotarybyandrea.com/

The Role of a Loan Signing Agent

 

In today’s modern-day world, one is often overwhelmed by paperwork. When buying a car, buying a home, or refinancing a home, the contracts and paperwork is often like a tome. We often do not understand much of the language and nomenclature and need a well-educated and well- informed professional to guide us through our many questions!

The purchase or refinancing of a home is a major decision in one’s life. The average person may not know what a Grant Deed or a Quick Claim Deed is. Or how do the fill out a PCOR (Preliminary Change of Ownership) form. What goes where on the Trust Certification Form? How do you explain accrued interest? What is the difference between an Impound or Escrow Account? The client may not understand how to read their Closing Disclosure Statement and have questions about the Note, or Payment Letter. Also, the Loan Signing Agent needs to know how to handle Escrow’s documents when dealing with out of state forms. They need to know when to attach a California Acknowledgement or a California Jurat to the notary loan documents.

Knowing these types of forms and guiding the borrower through the loan signing process is the role of a Loan Signing Agent. If a mistake is made and funding of the loan is delayed it can hold up the whole process and can become very costly to the parties involved. One cannot stress the importance of having an educated Loan Signing Agent to guide you in the loan signing process.

LOAN SIGNING ON HALLOWEEN

 

 

This Halloween was a very interesting one. I received a call from a Title Representative in Philadelphia. He was looking at first to have his escrow documents notarized. I asked a couple of questions regarding the mobile notary service he was requesting. I then realized that I should offer my services as a Loan Signing Agent.

He was thrilled that I was knowledgeable about the Grant Deed, Note, Escrow and Impounds Account, Closing Statement, and the PCOR (Preliminary Change of Ownership). I told him that my Loan Signing services included guiding the borrower through all the loan docs, and dropping them off at Fedex. He was pleased that the Loan Signing service that I offered encompassed this. He also said my questions regarding the loan documents were very intelligent ones. I was very pleased to receive such a nice compliment.

So, I headed to my loan signing dressed up for Halloween as a baseball player, a Dodger by the way. I told the Title Representative to let the client know that I would be in costume and mentioned I was excited my team is playing in the World Series tonight. The Title Representative so very appreciative to have a knowledgeable Loan Signing agent available at the last minute and on Halloween night.

Although this was his fourth investment property, the client had many questions about his refinance. I am always happy to help and provide the client with the information needed to guide them through the loan signing process. I notarized all necessary loan documents and completed the loan signing. The borrower was very grateful for my help and services. An interesting Halloween for both of us!

Off to Fedex first thing in the morning! Escrow and the Title Representative were so pleased and happy that the loan funded on time and the loan documents had no errors!

 

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