Fossil Bluff Associates

Certified Loan Signing Agents & Texas Online Notary Public Services

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  • Do I need an appointment?  Yes, although we are sometimes able to accommodate walk in clients it is preferable to book an appointment in advance to ensure a Notary will be available to see you. This also allows us to ensure we have all necessary documents in advance and that the appointment is as brief as possible for you. 
  • Why do I need to bring proof of identity?  One of the Notary’s fundamental duties is to properly identify the client. This requirement is laid down by our practice rules and legislation as well as the State of Texas. 
  • What documents do you notarize?  Fossil Bluff Associates offers a full range of Notarial Services. We notarize documents for domestic and international use. 
  • Are you available on weekends?  Yes, we provide Fort Worth area online notary and loan signing services on weekends by appointment.    
  • Why are documents notarized?  A Notary Public’s main purpose is to deter fraud. As an impartial witness, the Notary ensures that the signers of documents are who they say they are and not impostors. The Notary also makes sure that signers have entered into agreements knowingly and willingly. *
  • What is a notarial certificate?  A notarial certificate is the wording, usually found at the end of a document, that describes the steps a notary has taken in notarizing a document.  A notary may not notarize (i.e., sign and/or affix their seal) a document that does not have a notarial certificate.  Acknowledgments and jurats are examples of notarial certificates.  A notarial certificate for an online notarization must include a statement that the notarial act was an online notarization.  Please refer to the sample forms provided in this material for more information.  *
  • What is Online Notarization?  Online notarization is a notarial act performed by an online notary by means of two-way video and audio conference technology that meets the standards adopted by the Secretary of State for such actions including credential analysis and identity proofing.  *
  • What is Credential Analysis?  Credential Analysis is a process by which the validity of a government-issued identification credential is affirmed by a third party through review of public and proprietary data sources. 
  • What is Identity Proofing?   Identity Proofing is the process by which the identity of an individual is affirmed by a third party through review of public and proprietary data sources.  *
  • What is a Digital Certificate?  A Digital Certificate is a computer-based record or electronic file issued to an online notary public for the purpose of creating an official electronic signature. *
  • What is a Principal?  A Principal is an individual whose signature is notarized in a traditional or online notarization, or an individual who takes an oath or affirmation from a notary.  *
  • What is an Electronic Seal?  An Electronic Seal consists of information within a notarized electronic document that confirms the online notary public’s name, jurisdiction, notary ID, and commission expiration date.  It generally corresponds to information in notary seals used on paper documents.  *
  • Do I need to keep an electronic record of an online notarization that I do not charge for?  Yes.  Every online notarization must be recorded in the notary’s electronic record and the record must include the information required by Tex. Gov’t Code §406.108, including a recording of any video and audio conference that is the basis for satisfactory evidence of identity and a notation of the type of identification presented as evidence.  *
  • How much can online notaries charge for their services?  Online notaries may charge up to $25 for each notarization they perform in addition to regular notary charges.  Online notaries are not required to charge for their services, but they are allowed to charge up to $25 plus the regular notary fees authorized by Tex. Gov’t Code §406.024.  *

    For example: 
    • if an online notary notarizes the signature of one person, the charge will be $31, i.e. $25 + $6 = $31; 
    • if an online notary notarizes the signatures of two persons named in the same notarial certificate, the charge will be $32, i.e. $25 + $6 +$1 = $32;
    • if an online notary notarizes the signatures of two persons, and there are separate notarial certificates for each signing party, the charge will be $62, i.e. $25 +$6 for the first notarization and $25 +$6 for the second notarization, which totals $62. *
  • Do online notaries public need to obtain a bond in addition to the bond required to be a traditional notary?   No. However, Fossil Bluff Associate maintains a $10,000 bond as well as $50,000 Errors and Omissions Insurance. 
  • How long is the term of an online notary?  An online notary’s term runs concurrently with the term of that notary’s traditional commission.  For example, Jane Doe, a traditional notary, holds a commission that expires on January 16, 2019, and obtains her commission as an online notary on September 1, 2018.  Jane Doe’s online notary commission will expire on the same date as her traditional notary commission; namely, January 16, 2019.  When it is time to renew her online notary public commission, Jane Doe must renew her traditional notary public commission before renewing the online commission if she wants to continue to act as an online notary public, as the term of the online commission runs concurrently with the term of her traditional commission.  If Jane Doe no longer wants to perform online notarizations, she has the option of simply renewing her traditional notary public commission and not renewing her online commission.  *
  • How long must an online notary keep the electronic record of the notarizations performed by the notary (including the video and audio record of the notarization)? Five (5) years from the date of notarization.   *
  • Is an electronic notarization the same as an online notarization?  No.  An electronic notarization is not the same as a remote or online notarization.  In Texas, an electronic notarization (i.e., affixing an electronic or digital signature and seal to an electronic document) may be performed by a traditional notary. Although the signing of the document and notarization are performed electronically, both the notary public performing the notarization and the person signing the document must be physically present at the time of the notarization.  Electronic notarization is authorized by the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act found in Chapter 322 of the Texas Business and Commerce Code. *

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