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Notary Bulletin

Can I use one journal entry for a large number of notarized documents?

I am a California Notary, and will be notarizing more than 20 documents for the same person.  Do I need to enter each one in my journal, or can I make one entry and indicate the total number of documents notarized? — M. G., California

You will need to complete a full journal entry for each of the 20 documents. The California Secretary of State explains: “Not only must a notary public have a separate journal entry for each type of notarization, a specific description of the document, and the time and date of the official act, you must obtain a signature for each line item. If one person’s signature is notarized multiple times, it is not enough to capture the signature only once on a diagonal line drawn through several line items to show one person signed multiple documents. This is contrary to notary public law” (January 2020 Secretary of State Newsletter, page 5).

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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