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Quiz: Completing Notary certificate wording


1. What information goes in the venue section ("State of ... County of ...") of a Notary certificate?

A. The location where your Notary commission is filed

B. The location of the signer’s residence

C. The location where the notarization takes place

D. The location of your principal place of business

ANSWER: C. The venue indicates where the notarization took place. Most certificates ask the Notary to write in the name of the county and state where the notarization occurred in the venue section. However, some venue forms may ask for different location information, such as the city and state.

2. What do you write in the following blank space: "This document was acknowledged before me on December 13, 2018 by (blank)"?

A. The name of the person in your presence whose signature you are notarizing

B. The title of the person in your presence, such as “President of XYZ Company.”

C. The name of the credible witness who identified the signer

D. The name of the person or agency the document will be sent to

ANSWER: A. The phrase “(Blank) personally appeared before me” or similar phrasing indicates the name of the person who is present before you and whose signature you are notarizing.

3. When you sign a certificate in your role as a Notary, you should always sign your name:

A. Exactly as it appears on your birth certificate

B. Exactly as it appears on your driver’s license

C. Any way you wish, as long as your last name matches your commission

D. Exactly as it appears on your Notary commission

ANSWER: D. When you sign the certificate wording, your name must appear exactly as it appears on your Notary commission. You should not use nicknames, initials or other forms of your name that differ than the spelling on your commission. For example, if your driver’s license reads “P. R. Jones” but your Notary commission lists your name as “Patrick R. Jones,” whenever you sign a certificate you must use “Patrick R. Jones” as your signature.

4. True or False: When completing a certificate, it’s OK to backdate when the notarization took place.

ANSWER: False. The date you enter on a Notary certificate must always accurately reflect the date the notarization actually took place. Backdating or otherwise falsifying the date of a notarization is a serious offense that could lead to you losing your Notary commission, civil or criminal liability or even jail time.

5. When you affix your seal to a certificate, the seal impression:

A. Should be next or as close to your signature as possible

B. Should be clear and legible

C. Should not cover any text or writing on the document

D. All of the above

ANSWER: D. When affixing a seal impression to certificate wording, typically the seal impression should be placed next to your signature, or if this is not possible, as close as possible to the signature without covering any text or writing on the document. Make sure the seal impression is clear and legible without any smearing or blurring of information on the seal.

David Thun is the Assistant Managing Editor with the National Notary Association.


Add your comment

I.Y Qassim

17 Dec 2018

Every NOTARY should all these questions

Rita Bryan

17 Dec 2018

Great quiz

Occide Fontalus jr

17 Dec 2018

when am i gonna receive the certificate in the mail??? im ready to start

National Notary Association

19 Dec 2018

Hello. Do you mean you purchased certificates from the NNA? If so, you can contact our Customer Care team at 1-800-876-6827 for help with the status of your order.

Barton G. Weiss

20 Jan 2020

well done easy to follow.

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