How to Prepare for Your Notary

10 Things you need to know to prepare for your notarization.

1. A notary notarizes the signature(s) of the signer(s) not the document. The contents of the document is not the notary’s concern.

2. You should already have your document as notaries are not allowed in the state of South Carolina to draft or prepare documents.

3. Ensure that your document is complete. There should be no blank spaces. Review your document to ensure that there is a section for the notary to complete. If it is not, then advise your notary before meeting, as there are additional requirements for notarizing signatures on a document that does not contain the notorial section.

4. The signer (s) should be present to have their signature(s) notarized.

5. The signer(s) should have a unexpired government photo ID. Either a state issued driver’s license, state identification card, passport or military ID.

6. The signer (s) of the document should be fully aware of what they are signing from a mental standpoint.

7. Leave all signatures, date of signatures and notary section blank until you appear before your notary.

8. Review your document to see if additional witnesses are required. This may be the case when your document is some type of power of attorney for medical directive.

9. If your document requires additional witnesses, they should be persons who are present along with the notary to witness the signer’s signature(s). Your witnesses in most cases should be someone unrelated, not listed in the document, whom will not benefit from the document and who also has a valid ID to present to the notary.

10. Advise your notary before meeting if the signer is incapable of physically signing the document for themselves. As there are additional steps that need to be taken in such cases.

We are not attorneys and therefore cannot provide legal advice or advise meant. If in doubt about your document, what you are signing, if the document is legally binding or if you have the correct document please consult an attorney.

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