There are 4.4 million notary publics in the USA at the moment, and they’re needed more and more on the spot outside their offices. If you want to know what is a mobile notary, this text is a great starting point as we’re about to break down what their role is and how businesses can benefit from hiring them. We’ll also touch on how to become one, so stick around if you’re up for it.
Notaries have an ancient history, and it’s said they stem from freed slaves in Rome who were authorized to take notes on court proceedings. Yet, their role has changed beyond recognition, and modern laws now ascribe different functions to notaries. Read on to see what the situation is like in America in this regard.
What Is a Mobile Notary Public?
Today, according to the US common law, notaries are certified individuals authorized to witness the signing of documents and ensure the validity of legal affairs. Mobile public notaries perform the same task but on the premises preferred by the client. This means in offices for different types of businesses, penitentiaries, and even hospitals.
What Do Mobile Notaries Do?
People appointed by the state to be traveling notaries have the job to travel to notarize documents for various industries and individuals. Entrepreneurs developing small business ideas benefit from their expertise as they can cut the time spent in traffic and offices and reduce the stress related to having to contact the notary during working hours.
There is a slight difference between a mobile notary and a signing agent, though these terms are frequently used interchangeably. Mainly, the first one is solely entitled to notarize, whereas the second one is also expected to do related tasks, such as printing and providing document packages to the signer. Also, a signing agent is not a legal occupation in some states, whereas they all have mobile notaries. Still, for the sake of clarity, the text will treat them as the same entity in the remaining paragraphs.
What Is the Difference Between a Notary and a Mobile Notary?
Notaries are by definition officials who have the task to ensure that the signing parties of any document or contract, such as powers of attorney, property deeds, or testaments, are not intimidated into putting their signature, are aware of its content, and are who they claim to be. Whether they are mobile or not, they must be appointed by a state official such as the Secretary of State or Governor.
There aren’t any crucial differences in the work scope of mobile and in-office officials. The only difference is that those traveling always charge an extra fee for the commute apart from notarization. Executives who want their company to enjoy this convenience must ensure they can pay these added costs in addition to all other expenditures they’ll have, such as credit card transaction fees.
Yet, they’ll also have an added advantage of not rushing through the traffic and calling to make appointments. Business people can schedule these appointments and signings in their own time and in a way it is convenient for them.
Why Can Mobile Notary Services Be Useful for Businesses?
Company owners have a lot on their plate when it comes to understanding how to manage their finances and provide the best services for their clients while staying efficient. Apart from having to offer various payment methods, they need to understand how credit card processing works and all the nuances that follow, such as PCI compliance, the role of acquiring banks, and also merchant processing companies.
Finances are one side of the story, but legal aspects mustn’t be neglected either as every company handles numerous documents per day. Many of those must be notarized, and that is why these flexible officials come in handy. If you’re dealing with your own clients, the last thing you want is to rush to beat the clock and google where the nearest notary is, especially if you need their services often.
What Services Can You Opt For?
After you’ve learned everything about applying for a merchant account or useful software tools such as clover insights, you’re ready to dig into legal matters. We outlined above what the primary role of this profession is, but determining when a business needs a notary is more complex. These are all services notaries can provide you with:
- Acknowledgments – Mortgage deeds and similar documents have to be signed voluntarily, and the notary vouches for the identity of people involved,
- Affirmations – In case it’s impossible to obtain an affidavit, notaries can administer oaths that will remove impediments from legal affairs,
- Certification of copies – The officials guarantee that a copy is true to the original. This is significant for driving licenses, social security cards, diplomas, and similar documents, but not all states allow for this service,
- Jurats – Notaries confirm the verity of the contents of a document and the signer’s genuine intentions.
How Should Owners Weigh Up the Pros and Cons?
These professionals are both a necessity and a luxury, so you must calculate your expenses wisely and see whether your company needs such help if you want to develop the strategy of the most successful small businesses.
Sectors that are primarily dependent on notaries are insurance companies, auto dealers, mortgage sectors, and alike as they go through a variety of binding documents in their daily practices. For them, a mobile agent is a blessing and probably worth the cost, so not utilizing this option is akin to losing focus, a common mistake business owners make.
How to Become a Loan Signing Agent?
If you’re learning how to start a dropshipping business on the one hand or developing e-commerce business models and have some time to spare on the other, you can consider going down this path. A major perk of this vocation is that individuals determine the number of clients they want to take in, and they manage their own time accordingly.
A common misconception is that you need to be an attorney to perform this job, but it’s not true. Attorneys are vital for drafting contracts and other issues, but they must upgrade their certificates if they want to be loan signing agents. These are the steps anybody aspiring for this role must complete.
Check Your State Regulations
Just like you’d have to see what your local governing body has decided on small business tax deductions or similar issues, you have to comply with criteria notaries must meet. The significant rules include completing a designated course and exam, going through a thorough background check, and taking the oath of office. If you do it all by the book, you’ll get a commission certificate.
Obtain the Necessary Equipment
Equipment is what gets the job done, be it in terms of merchant software and hardware such as payment gateways or credit card virtual terminals, or in this case, different supplies you’ll use in your work. Your vendor must be state-approved, and you should get:
- A stamp,
- A journal to register your files,
- A printer and scanner, depending on local regulations and clients,
- A bag.
Get Insurance to Protect Your Interests As a Signing Agent
A surety bond is a must in most states, and this kind of policy serves to protect your clients’ finances if any debt was incurred due to your decisions in failed transactions. However, you should also file for errors and omissions insurance if you’d like to hedge your bets. This one shields you against complaints about negligent or fraudulent actions. Each state has different views on these, so you’ll do well to research before applying.
How Much Money Can I Make as a Mobile Notary?
There will be numerous factors that influence your income if you go down this path. The size of your area, as well the need of businesses for these services, will be decisive, as well as the situation on the real estate market.
Besides, as we said, you can choose whether it’s on a full-time basis or not, and that is crucial for the growth of your revenue. Roughly speaking, agents make $8,000 per month on average, while some committed ones go as high as $15,000 per month. Still, you must remember that there are also things you’ll be paying for.
Traveling Notary Costs
To start working and stay in business, you’ll have to cover a lot of expenditures. We are all aware that running a company entails costs. Enterprise executives know all about interchange fees, how to deal with the acquirer processor fee, or what a visa access fee is. Simply put, they know all about credit card processing costs and how to manage them.
You’ll have to learn about your business costs before you answer the question Is being a mobile notary worth it? The starting costs you’ll pay for are:
- National Certification – around $60 annually,
- Cost of insurance – $200 on average per policy,
- Commission – $70 on average, but varies according to location,
- Bond – some states require $5,000, whereas others go as far as $15,000,
- Training – Can range from $100 to $500 depending on state regulations.
A Reliable Credit Card Processing Company Can Help Regardless of Your Ambitions
If you’re an aspiring company owner, the great news is that top-rated merchant companies have introduced traveling notaries as part of their offer. Apart from superb credit card processing services, you can also have documents stamped without going anywhere and thus save a lot of time and nerves.
On the other hand, if you wish to try becoming an agent yourself and boost your income this way or make an extra buck, you can still benefit from merchant service providers. Given that Americans prefer this cashless payment method, you’ll do well to research merchant services rates as soon as possible and contact the company of your choice.