Notary Bulletin Guiding Principle IV: The Certificate By NNA Staff on May 05, 2010 in Best Practices The notarial certificate and the information it contains are central to a Notary’s public duty. Different states have different requirements regarding what a certificate contains, but regardless of the jurisdiction, people rely on the certificate as a symbol of the integrity of a transaction — whether it’s a power of attorney, a parental permission form or a real estate purchase. A certificate that contains erroneous or false information undermines the value of the notarization, while a correctly executed certificate provides powerful protection against fraud. Guidelines for the proper use of certificates are detailed in Guiding Principle IV of The Notary Public Code of Professional Responsibility. IV THE NOTARY SHALL NOT EXECUTE A FALSE OR INCOMPLETE CERTIFICATE, NOR BE INVOLVED WITH ANY DOCUMENT OR TRANSACTION THAT THE NOTARY BELIEVES IS FALSE, DECEPTIVE OR FRAUDULENT. Notaries are solely responsible for the accuracy and compliance of the notarial certificate. Some states, for example, stipulate the exact wording for certificates. Others only give broad guidance. It’s up to the Notary to make sure the language on the certificate meets state law. Email Share 2 Comments Add your commentJames McNair20 Jul 2015Is the OPRAH standard acceptable to determine the notary's belief the document/transaction is false, misleading or fraudulent?James McNair20 Jul 2015Notary Guiding Principle IV as composed leaves quite a lot of wiggle room for the Notary Public to "believe" what he or she may want to believe. I believe some objective standard should be articulated for the sake of clarification.Leave a Comment Required * Name * Email *(for verfication purposes only) Comment * Enter the text shown in this image *(text is case sensitive)All comments are reviewed and if approved, will display.