CA Assembly Bill 625 | NNA
Law

CA Assembly Bill 625

Notary Law Update: CA Assembly Bill 625

State: California

Summary:

AB 625 reclassifies an inmate ID issued by the California Department of Corrections in the first “category” of written IDs that are acceptable to present to a Notary in Civil Code Section 1185.

Signed:  August 27, 2013

Effective:  January 01, 2014

Chapter: 159

Affects:

Amends Civil Code Section 1185

Changes:
  1. Reclassifies an inmate ID issued by the California Department of Corrections as satisfactory evidence of identity.
  2. Clarifies that an inmate ID issued by the California Department of Corrections may be used only if the inmate is in custody in prison.
  3. Clarifies that an inmate ID issued by the California Department of Corrections may be used only if the inmate is in custody in prison.
Analysis:
In California, written identification that constitutes satisfactory evidence falls into two categories. In the first category, for an ID to be acceptable it must be current or issued in the past 5 years and be a California driver’s license or non-driver ID, or a U.S. passport (and U.S. passport card). In the second category, for an ID to be acceptable it must be current or issued in the past 5 years and contain a signature, photograph and physical description. IDs falling into this category are more
numerous, and include inmate ID cards issued by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) for inmates in custody. For many years now, Notaries who have been asked to notarize documents for an inmate incarcerated in a CDCR institution and other penitentiaries have had to refuse requests to notarize for inmates who could not present proper written identification that complied with the statute. As the California Legislature’s findings indicate, inmates not being able to access Notary services have caused many issues for inmates, particularly in matters that relate to the care and custody of children. Documents arranging for temporary guardianship and medical care of minor children are among the most important types of documents inmates need to have notarized, particularly inmates who are single parents. The effect of AB 625 is to reclassify IDs issued by the CDCR in the first category of IDs, thereby removing the requirement that such IDs must formally contain a signature, photograph and physical description. Another small, but important change, is that the CDCR ID is acceptable only if the inmate is in custody in prison. While AB 625 represents a very timely and important change, Notaries should keep in mind that the reclassification pertains only to IDs issued by the CDCR for inmates in custody in CDCR facilities. There are other prisons in the state that are operated by cities, counties, as well as the federal government. The new law does not affect IDs for inmates incarcerated in these facilities.
 

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