CA Assembly Bill 464


State: California
Signed: August 12, 2013

Effective: January 01, 2014
Chapter: 78


AB 464 amends Civil Code Section 1188 to remove the contradiction between Section 1188 and 1189(a)(1) and requires Notaries to use the proof of execution by subscribing witness certificate exactly in the form prescribed by Civil Code Section 1195.


Amends Civil Code Sections 1188 and 1195.

  1. Removes the inconsistency that exists between Civil Code Section 1188 and 1189(a)(1).
  2. Amends Civil Code Section 1195 to require any proof of execution certificate to be in the form prescribed in Section 1195.
The California Recorders Association approached the NNA last year wanting to sponsor clarifying legislation to address the rejection of documents for recordation that did not have the California acknowledgment certificate precisely in the wording required by Civil Code Section 1189. One of the problems was the section immediately preceding Section 1189. Section 1188 reads, “An officer taking the acknowledgment of an instrument shall endorse thereon or attach thereto a certificate substantially in the form prescribed in Section 1189.” Anyone reading this statute would conclude that any acknowledgment form would be acceptable as long as it was substantially similar to the California form in Section 1189. But, in conflict with Section 1188, Section 1189(a)(1) reads, “Any certificate of acknowledgment taken within this state shall be in the following form: …” Therefore, to address this contradiction, the California Recorders Association proposed amending Section 1188 to read, “An officer taking the acknowledgment of an instrument shall endorse thereon or attach thereto a certificate in the form prescribed in Section 1189.” The NNA pointed out to the Recorders Association that this proposed change could cause additional problems, namely, it could unintentionally conflict with Section 1189(c) that allows a California Notary to complete a certificate of acknowledgment from another state under certain situations. Thus, in order to avoid this potential consequence, the NNA proposed the text that was introduced in AB 464 and signed by the Governor. During the conversations with the California Recorders Association, the NNA also suggested amendments to Section 1195 of the Civil Code that would require Notaries to use the certificate for a proof of execution exactly as it appears in that section. The rationale was that when a Notary completes a jurat and acknowledgment, the Notary must use the statutory forms verbatim (except for the case of out-of-state acknowledgment certificates). To make it easier for Notaries, the Recorders agreed to include the NNA’s recommended amendments to Civil Code Section 1195 as well.