A Notary Public is an official of integrity who is typically appointed by the secretary of state to serve the public as an impartial witness in performing a variety of fraud deterrent acts related to signing of important documents. Notaries are publicly known as “ministerial” officials, meaning that they are expected to abide by written rules without the use of significant personal discretion.
Duty of Notary Public
A Notary’s duty is to vet the signers of important documents. Such documents include property deeds, wills, and powers of attorney. The key things that Notaries screen for is making sure that the singer’s identity is true, that the singers are signing documents willingly and not under duress or intimidation, and that the signer is aware of the contents of the document or transaction. Additionally, some notarizations require the Notary to put the singer under an oath, declaring under penalty of perjury that the information in a document is true or correct.
Above all else impartiality is the foundation of the Notary’s public trust, as would otherwise be the case with a judicial official. They are duty bond to refrain from acting in situations where they have a personal interest. The public trusts that the Notary’s screening process has not been tainted by self-interest. Furthermore, impartiality dictates that a Notary never refuse to serve a person due to race, nationality, religion, politics, and sexual orientation.
Qualifications of Notary Public
There are specific qualifications laid out by the Department of the Secretary of State to become qualified for notarial commission. An applicant must meet all of the following qualifications:
How to become a Notary Public
There are eight steps involved in becoming a Notary Public in North Carolina. An individual wishing to become a Notary Public must abide by each of the following steps: