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What To Do If Your Signer Speaks A Different Language

Healthcare professionals are likely to encounter signers who come from many different cultures and backgrounds. And on occasion you will encounter a signer that isn’t fluent in English, making direct communication difficult.

In order for a notarization to take place, the Notary and signer must be able to communicate directly with each other. A third-party interpreter may not be used, because the interpreter might have a reason to misrepresent what the Notary and signer say to each other.

If the signer does not speak English, but the Notary is fluent in the language the signer speaks, it is acceptable to perform the notarization. For example, if the signer only speaks Spanish, the notarization can still take place if the Notary also speaks Spanish. However, if the Notary does not speak the signer’s language, the signer must find a Notary who does.

Finally, the notarial certificate and the signature being notarized on the document must be written in a language the Notary can read and understand. If the Notary cannot read the certificate wording or the signature, the Notary cannot be certain they accurately reflect the requested notarial act and/or the signer’s actual name.

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