© 2009 Kim Giancaterino. All Rights Reserved.
California Notary Acknowledgment
What is a Notary Acknowledgment?
An acknowledgment is the form most frequently completed by a notary public. It can accompany a wide range of documents in cases where the identity of the signer requires verification.
The acknowledgment certifies that a signer personally appeared before a notary and provided a valid form of identification. Acknowledgment forms also indicate the date and county where an actual signing takes place. In California, a certificate of acknowledgment must be worded exactly as follows:
California Notary Acknowledgment Form
A Word About Recorded Documents
What if a word or comma is missing on the acknowledgment portion of a real estate deed? Will the county recorder simply make the necessary corrections? Unfortunately, the law makes no provision for this. More than likely the deed will be rejected.
Even the best mortgage and title companies make mistakes while cutting and pasting text for loan document packages. When in doubt, it’s wise to play it safe and attach an all-purpose California acknowledgment certificate to any document headed for the county recorder.
Choose the Proper Certificate
A notary is not responsible for choosing the type of certificate to attach to a document. Before making an appointment with a notary you’ll need to determine which form is required for your document (acknowledgment, jurat, affidavit, etc.)
Acknowledgments Vary from State to State
In most cases notary forms will be included in your document package, though actual notarial language may vary depending on the state in which the document originated.
For example, I notarize a real estate loan packages for a regular client who buys property in Colorado. The acknowledgment statement never matches what is required in California. How do we get around this?
Acting on my client’s instructions, I cross out the notary block, write “see California acknowledgment” on the line provided for the notary signature, and attach an all-purpose acknowledgment form to the document.
Shop for Legal Forms and More
General Affidavit, Power of Attorney, Last Will and Testament, Living Will, Real Estate Deed, Promissory Note, Premarital Agreement, Residential Rental Agreement, and more. California state laws prohibit notaries from choosing or completing legal documents for their clients.
2019 Notary Public Handbook (Secretary of State)
Notebook photograph by Line-tOodLinGfc