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Hotline Tip: Can A Signer Correct A Mistake On A Notarized Document?

NNA Hotline Tips For NotariesA client called to inform me that a mistake had been made on a notarial certificate and asked if she could make the slight edit to the information. Is this acceptable? – R.N., Fargo, ND

Let the signer know that you, and you alone, must correct the certificate. Any changes to a notarial certificate must always be made by the Notary who performed the original notarization. A certificate with more than one person’s handwriting on it may cause suspicions of tampering.

To make the correction, simply line through any error, add the correction as close to the original as possible, and then initial and date your change.

Changes that may be made to the certificate include:

  • the venue,
  • the statement of particulars,
  • the signature of the Notary, and
  • the imprint of the official seal of the Notary.

Notaries may only correct information in the notarial certificate. They must never make changes in the main body of the document. Only the signer can do that.

Hotline answers are based on the laws in the state where the question originated and may not reflect the laws of other states. If in doubt, always refer to your own state statutes. — The Editors

 

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained NNA Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call (888) 876-0827, Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

8 Comments

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Annie Faye Lewis

24 Apr 2017

Client in nursing home from surgery in good mind and able to have full conversation. I received his I.D. And sign Power of Attorney doc and Journal plus thumb print. My Steve sign poa on wrong line where Mr. Gonzales was to sign. I witness signing, but Mr. Gonzales help sit Mr. Steve up so he could sign poa. Unaware he had signed wrong line. Mr. Steve health is not able to redo poa. What can be done legally for to have doc legal for bank and all business for Mr. Steve? Please help.

National Notary Association

25 Apr 2017

Hello Annie. We are very sorry, but we are not authorized to give legal advice on these matters. You would need to speak with a qualified attorney for assistance.

Roberta Bible

26 Apr 2018

On a power of attorney form, there is a spot where the Principal name is printed. However, the principal printed his son's name by accident. He drew a simple line through it, initialed it in front of the notary and then printed his name correctly beneath. Is this ok?

National Notary Association

26 Apr 2018

Hello. We're sorry, but we cannot provide legal advice whether or not a correction to a power of attorney form was acceptable or not. You would need to contact the issuing or receiving agency or a qualified attorney to answer this question.

kelly

03 Oct 2018

A 3rd party is requesting a signature on an assignment, the signer and I (the Notary) complete the signature and Notarization, can the 3rd party then add or edit the document after it is already notarized?

National Notary Association

03 Oct 2018

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

Hojin

10 Oct 2018

My dad to to get his papers notarized and he accidentally printed his name instead of doing a signature. The notary didn’t Realize this. Is he able to sign inter the printed part??

National Notary Association

10 Oct 2018

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

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