IA Senate File 452 | NNA

IA Senate File 452

Notary Law Update: IA Senate File 452

State: Iowa

Summary:

SF 452 clarifies that a Notary may complete a notarial certificate if any of 4 stated rules governing the certificate listed in the statute apply, and that if a Notary’s seal contains the words “My Commission Expires” followed by a blank line, the Notary must write in the expiration date of the Notary’s commission. SB 452 also makes technical changes to other statutes throughout the Iowa Code, but these changes do not alter the substance or meaning of these statutes.

Signed:  June 20, 2013

Effective:  July 01, 2013

Chapter: 140

Affects:
  1. Clarifies that a certificate of a notarial act is sufficient if any of the following apply: (a) it is in a short form set forth in section 9B.16; (b) it is in a form otherwise permitted by Iowa law; (c) it is in a form permitted by the law applicable in the jurisdiction in which the notarial act is performed; or (d) it sets forth the actions of the notarial officer and the actions are sufficient to meet the requirements of the notarial act as provided in sections 9B.5, 9B.6, and 9B.7, or an Iowa law other than in chapter 9B.
  2. Clarifies that if the Notary has the words in his or her seal reading “My Commission Expires” and followed by a blank line, the Notary shall on which the notary public shall indicate the date of expiration, if any, of the notary public’s commission, as required by and in satisfaction of section 9B.15, subsection 1, paragraph “e”. 3. Replaces the term “notary public” with “notarial officer,” the operative term used under the Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts, in several statutes outside of Chapter 9B.
  3. Replaces the term “notary public” with “notarial officer,” the operative term used under the Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts, in several statutes outside of Chapter 9B.
Changes:
In 2012, Iowa enacted the Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts (RULONA) and repealed previous  chapter 9E that contained the Notary statutes. It is inevitable that in putting in place a new statutory scheme for regulating Notaries there would be some minor issues to iron out. In cases such as this, “clean up” legislation is often enacted in the year or two following a major new law change. Senate File 452 contains “clean up” provisions. It clarifies that a notarial officer may complete a notarial certificate if “any” (replacing the word “all”) of the 4 rules listed in the statute apply. This may seem like a small change, but it really is important. Without the change, a Notary technically could complete a certificate for a notarial act only if it complied with all 4 of the rules. This would be practically impossible and the effect was that it could prevent a Notary from completing a certificate for any notarization. Therefore, this change was necessary. SF 452 also clarifies that if a Notary has an official seal made with the words “My Commission Expires” followed by a blank line, the Notary is to write the Notary’s commission expiration date on the line. Iowa Notaries have been permitted to have their seals made with a blank line so that they would not have to purchase a new seal every 4 years. This is not a change of policy, but simply a clarification of what the statute intended all along. Presumably, there were Notaries who failed to write the expiration date on the line, thus possibly preventing documents from being recorded in the land records or causing rejections by other filing offices. Finally, SF 452 replaces the term “notary public” with “notarial officer” in several statutes throughout the Iowa Code, since under the RULONA the operative term used is “notarial officer.”
 

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