NV Senate Bill 453 | NNA
Law

NV Senate Bill 453

Notary Law Update: NV Senate Bill 453

State: Nevada

Summary:

Senate Bill 453 adds new misconduct and authentication provisions.

Signed:  June 17, 2005

Effective:  October 01, 2005

Chapter: 468

Affects:

Creates two new sections (yet to be numbered) of NRS Chapter 240; amends NRS 240.001, 240.007, 240.010, 240.033, 240.161, and 240.165

Changes:
  1. Prohibits willfully notarizing the signature of a person who is not in the presence of the Notary, or, if in the presence of the Notary, who is either not personally known to the Notary or not identified by documentary identification; and stipulates that such an offense is a gross misdemeanor.
  2. Specifies that any person who aids and abets a Notary in committing the above-mentioned offense commits a gross misdemeanor.
  3. Permits the Secretary of State to request the Attorney General to bring an action against any person who represents himself or herself as a Notary without having been issued a certificate of appointment.
  4. Prohibits the Secretary of State from issuing an apostille or certification if (1) the document to be certified has not been notarized in accordance with Nevada’s Notary laws, or (2) the Secretary has a reasonable belief the document may be used to accomplish a fraudulent, criminal, or unlawful purpose.
  5. For documents destined for other U.S. states, jurisdictions, and territories, and nations not a party to The Hague Convention on Authentication, authorizes the Secretary of State to issue a certification verifying the status of a Notary and the genuineness of the Notary’s signature upon payment of a $20 fee. (Previously, Nevada law only provided for issuance of apostilles to documents destined to Hague-member nations.)
Analysis:

Senate Bill 453 – the fourth legislative enactment affecting Nevada Notaries in 2005 – adds new misconduct and authentication provisions. A common thread running through the new changes is prevention of fraud. The prohibition against willfully notarizing the signature of a person not present before or not identified by Notary is commendable, but it may be at odds with NRS 240.163, for it omits that a Notary could use a credible witness to establish the identity of the unknown signer.

The new authentication provisions are meant to thwart the use of notarized documents containing the official imprimatur of the Secretary of State for illegal use. Interestingly, Nevada holds that for a document to be eligible for authentication, it must have been notarized by a duly appointed Notary AND must have been notarized correctly, a position not universally held.

Read the bill text.

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