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Can I Notarize A Post-Dated Document?

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If a document reads “made as of December 3, 2016”, (a future date) can I still notarize it as of today or before that date? C.M., California

Yes. If the document is dated in the future, there is nothing in the law that prohibits you from notarizing it as long as you clearly indicate the date you notarized the signature of the signer on the notarial certificate. Should you need further assistance, please contact us.

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

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8 Comments

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Randel Paul Beck

18 Apr 2016

Is this law also good in California you can sign a document that is date in the future? How far in advsnce? Also if it has been past.

National Notary Association

18 Apr 2016

Hello. As stated in the article above, there is nothing in the law that prohibits you from notarizing as long as you clearly indicate the date you notarized the signature of the signer on the notarial certificate.

Theresa Black

25 Apr 2016

I am confused this advice seems to contradict an item in Step 2 of your article 5 Steps To A Proper Notarization where you say "To check the document date, which should never come after the date of the notarization." Can you clarify?

National Notary Association

25 Apr 2016

Hello Theresa. The information in the Hotline Tip is the most current best practice recommendation. We've edited the "5 Steps To A Proper Notarization" story to bring the points you mentioned up to date. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Ann Murphy

25 Apr 2016

This response seems to contradict Step 2 of the article “5 Steps to a Proper Notarization” by Michael Lewis. Step 2 states that you should always scan over the document for a number of important reasons, including to check the document date, which should never come after the date of the notarization. A document dated in the future is one that comes after the date of notarization. How does the advice in this article reconcile with the response provided by the NNA?

National Notary Association

25 Apr 2016

Hello Ann. The information in the Hotline Tip is the most current best practice recommendation. We've edited the "5 Steps To A Proper Notarization" story to bring the points you mentioned up to date. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Judy Hayes

12 Jul 2016

I disagree with this response. The document should never be dated for a time after the date of the notarization as you are notarizing a signature in real time. If the document is to go into effect after the date of notarization, then that is a fact that should be recited in the document, but the date of the document should still be the date of the notarization or prior.

Judy Hayes

12 Jul 2016

I especially disagree in the cases of the notarizations of Last Will and Testament documents. If you notarize the signature of a person on December 3, 2016, but the Will is dated January 1, 2017 and the signer dies between those two dates, I think a court of law would definitely have a problem with this scenario.

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