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How do I notarize using a translator in my state?

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With the new Notary laws in my state came new certificate forms. I know one change was any translator used must appear in person. Why isn't that specific document available anymore? How are we proceeding with a notarization using a translator? thank you for your time!D. C., Arizona

The old Arizona law was repealed. It authorized a Notary to perform a notarial act on a document that is a translation of a document in a language the Notary does not understand only if the person performing the translation signed an affidavit to vouch that the translation is accurate and complete (former ARS 41-313.D, repealed by 2018 House Bill 2178).

Now, the translator must be present before you when you perform the notarial act. There is no affidavit that is required under the new law, but you must be able to communicate with the translator.

Please note that only two states — Arizona and Mississippi — permit the use of a foreign-language interpreter during a notarization. Colorado only permits the use of certified interpreters with no disqualifying interest for a signer who is hearing impaired. Notaries in any other state should not use an interpreter to communicate with a signer during a notarization. — The Editors

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 consultants to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call 1-888-876-0827, Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST.

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Jean wilfrid simon

27 Dec 2022

It very important when you become a public notary you respect the law of the country or state


08 Mar 2023

In Iowa, can a notary notarize their own translation? For example, a document needs signed by a non English speaking Hispanic person at a DMV and the person translating is also the notary.

National Notary Association

09 Mar 2023

Hello. No. Notaries cannot certify translations of documents or their own signatures, and in Iowa a Notary may not notarize if the Notary is also a party or signer to the document (for example, if you signed the document as the translator or are named as the translator): “A notarial officer shall not perform a notarial act with respect to a record to which the notarial officer or the notarial officer’s spouse is a party, or in which either of them has a direct beneficial interest. A notarial act performed in violation of this subsection is voidable” (IC 9B.4.2]). Please see this article for more information:

Nayshunda O Burke

22 Mar 2024

An interpreter and a translator are two different occupations. Interpreters are oral and translators work with written language. All interpreters are not translators and vice versa. Each occupation, requires trainin because you are going form the source language to the target language and it is not only the words but the culture, euphenisms and the context that has to be included.


28 Mar 2024

Hello, I am a notary in New Hampshire - Is it possible to use a translating device? With advancements in technology there are devices that can translate a conversation between two individuals. Is something like this okay to use during notarization? Examples: Phones built in translation feature or external device such as a portable translator

National Notary Association

09 Apr 2024

New Hampshire does not have a law or a regulation that addresses the use of an interpreter or translating technology. However, it is a best course of practice not to use interpreters, or translating technology and refer the signer to a Notary Public that speaks the same language as the signer.

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