Nov 102016
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powerattorney  pow·er of at·tor·ney

  noun: power of attorney

  1.   the authority to act for another person in specified or all legal or financial matters.
    •   a legal document giving power of attorney to someone.

Sometimes a person will have Power of Attorney to sign for someone else who probably is traveling or otherwise not available to sign. You, of course, can’t notarize the missing person. You will notarize the person signing with the Power of Attorney. However, it isn’t your job to verify their Power of Attorney. It’s the job of the escrow officer to make sure the Power of Attorney is acceptable to the lender. Your job is only to notarize what they sign. You ID the person appearing before you in your Notary Journal and take all their information as you normally would. Have them sign and thumbprint your Notary Journal. Then you also have them sign your journal exactly as they will be signing for the missing person as their “Attorney in Fact.”

Here is how they should sign the documents for the missing person: If Suzie S. Public is signing for John Q. Public who is out of town, she signs: “John Q. Public, by Suzie S. Public, his Attorney in Fact,” in your Notary Journal and on the documents. Ask your escrow officer how to do the initials. Sometimes just the initials are acceptable, but if not, it should be, “JQP, by SSP, his Attorney in Fact.” These signatures should all be done in handwriting, not printed.

When you fill out the notary certificate, you only notarize Suzie S. Public, the one who actually appeared before you. Remember, you can never notarize someone who doesn’t appear before you, therefore that person is not included on the notary certificate. When you fill in the certificate you put, “personally appeared Suzie S. Public as self (if she was also a signer of the documents) and Suzie S. Public as Attorney in Fact for John Q. Public.”

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