top of page

Top Notary Signing Agent Mistakes

Avoiding Pitfalls: Top Notary Signing Agent Mistakes to Steer Clear Of


It happens very often that notary publics commit careless mistakes due to which they end up in big trouble. The same can happen with Notary Signing Agents. The clients of a notary public are generally smaller when compared to a notary signing agent. Signing agents play a big role in the mortgage industry and hence, any mistake can lead to big financial damage. Therefore, signing agents must avoid such mistakes to prevent lawsuits and ensure repeat customers. We have compiled a list of the most common mistakes committed by notary signing agents so that you don’t end up doing the same.



Avoid pitfalls: mistakes notary signing agents make
Top Notary signing agent mistakes

Inadequate Preparation


One of the most common mistakes that notary signing agents make is failing to adequately prepare for signing appointments. Arriving unprepared can lead to delays, errors, and a lack of confidence in your abilities, ultimately undermining the trust and credibility of your notarial services. Take the time to review the loan documents in advance, familiarize yourself with the signing requirements, and ensure you have all the necessary supplies and equipment on hand to conduct the signing smoothly and efficiently.


Missing signature(s)


Notary signing agents deal with documents that require the signature of the client on multiple pages. Therefore, it is common for the client and the signing agent to miss the signature on a few pages. The signing agent cannot move ahead until he gets the signature on all the necessary pages. If you are lucky to receive the documents from your client in advance, mark the spaces for signature in advance so that you don’t miss them. In case that happens, you have no other option but to call your client back and get the signature done on the missing spaces.


Skipping Proper Identification Verification


Proper identification verification is a fundamental requirement of notarial acts, yet many notary signing agents make the mistake of overlooking this crucial step. Failing to verify the identity of signers can leave you vulnerable to fraud and legal liability, compromising the integrity of the notarial process. Always insist on seeing valid, government-issued identification from signers, verify the accuracy of the information provided, and document the identification details in your notarial journal to establish a clear paper trail.


Acknowledgment details filled out incorrectly


As a notary signing agent, you have to fill the acknowledgment with details like the borrower’s name, county, state, date, etc. It is very important that you fill out the details correctly. In case you make a mistake, strike the error once and initial on top of it. The most common error committed by signing agents is that the spelling of the borrower is written incorrectly. Therefore, make sure you don’t commit the same mistake.


Rushing Through the Signing Process


In the fast-paced world of notarial signings, it can be tempting to rush through the signing process to accommodate tight schedules or meet deadlines. However, rushing through signings can lead to errors, omissions, and misunderstandings that can have serious consequences for all parties involved. Take the time to review each document thoroughly, ensure all signatures and initials are placed correctly, and provide clear explanations of the document contents to signers. Prioritize accuracy and attention to detail over speed, and strive to deliver a positive signing experience for your clients.


Shrunken font size


Signing agents often commit the mistake of shrinking the font size to fit the document to letter-size paper. This can be a problem because many counties have specified a minimum font and going below that will lead to a violation of the rule. Using a dual tray printer is the best way to tackle this problem. If you commit this mistake, the county will eventually reject the document and you will have to pay a visit to your client again with the document in its right font.


Neglecting to Maintain Notarial Records


Proper record-keeping is a legal requirement for notaries, yet many notary signing agents neglect to maintain accurate and up-to-date notarial records. Failing to keep thorough and organized records can make it difficult to track notarial acts, verify signer identities, or defend against legal challenges in the event of disputes or litigation. Establish a system for maintaining detailed notarial records, including a notarial journal, logbook, or electronic record-keeping system, and diligently record all relevant information for each notarial act performed.


Illegible notary stamp


This is a mistake that even the notary public makes while notarizing documents. Once the signing agent is done with everything, he puts his notary stamp on the document. The stamp is an indication that the signing agent has approved the document. However, if the stamp is illegible, it can open the signing agent to potential problems. A signing agent should always carry a bottle of ink in case the stamp dries out.


Overstepping Notarial Authority


Notaries are authorized to perform specific notarial acts within the bounds of their jurisdiction, but many notary signing agents make the mistake of overstepping their authority or providing legal advice beyond their expertise. Avoid offering legal advice, interpreting document contents, or providing opinions on the legality or validity of transactions. Instead, focus on fulfilling your notarial duties impartially and objectively, and refer clients to legal professionals or relevant authorities for any legal questions or concerns that arise during the signing process.


Failing to Communicate Effectively


Effective communication is essential for successful notarial signings, yet many notary signing agents struggle with poor communication practices that can lead to misunderstandings or conflicts with clients. Make an effort to communicate clearly and proactively with all parties involved in the signing process, including borrowers, lenders, title companies, and signing services. Provide regular updates on the status of signings, address any concerns or questions promptly, and confirm appointment details and requirements in advance to ensure a smooth and seamless signing experience for everyone involved.


Ignoring Continuing Education and Professional Development


The field of notarial services is constantly evolving, with new laws, regulations, and best practices emerging regularly. Yet, many notary signing agents make the mistake of neglecting continuing education and professional development, leading to outdated knowledge and skills. Stay informed about changes in notarial laws and regulations, participate in training courses and workshops, and seek opportunities for ongoing learning and skill development to stay ahead of the curve and maintain the highest standards of professionalism in your notarial practice.


Conclusion


There are many more mistakes that a notary signing agent can commit. The notary signing agent needs to be careful and that is the only way he can avoid such mistakes. As you face more and more clients, your instincts get better and you will commit lesser errors. By avoiding these common mistakes and adhering to best practices, you can enhance the quality of your notarial services, build trust and credibility with your clients, and uphold the integrity of the notarial profession. Remember, professionalism, attention to detail, and continuous improvement are key to success as a notary signing agent. By learning from the mistakes of others and committing to excellence in your practice, you can establish yourself as a trusted and reliable partner in the loan closing process.

13 views

Comments


bottom of page