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Notary Bulletin

What do I do if "SEAL" appears next to a signer's name?

What does it mean when the word “SEAL” appears next to the borrower’s name? Should I stamp it with my Notary seal? — T.M., Texas

The word “SEAL” at the end of (or below) a signature line means ‘signature’. For example, a mortgage note or Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac Texas Deed of Trust will have “(Seal)” at the end of the line for the borrower’s signature. A person’s signature is considered their seal.  In this case it is not referring to a ‘Notary seal’ and you should not affix an image of your seal there.  If the document requires notarization, typically there will be a certificate of acknowledgment following the borrowers’ signatures.

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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