Boynton Beach, FL 33474

Proof of Identity


Proof of Identity

The primary duty of a notary public is to verify the identities of each signer on a document. This is done to protect against fraudulent acts that may otherwise void the notarized document. The notary public typically requests each signer to provide identification that verifies their identity. If the client fails to provide an acceptable form of identification, the notary public is legally obligated to refuse the service.

So, what’s considered an “acceptable” form of identification when seeking the services of a notary public?

U.S. Passports

Accepted forms of identification for having notarial services performed include the following:

The job of a notary public may seem easy enough, but they are responsible for performing several crucial duties to ensure the document’s execution is performed correctly and according to federal and state laws. These duties include verifying the signer’s identify and ensuring the document is signed without coercion.

Every signer must show valid (not expired) photo identification. All identification must contain a photo, a physical description, a signature and a serial number. Florida recognizes the following types of identification if issued within the last 5 years:

State-issued driver’s license

State-issued identification card

U.S. military identification card

Resident alien identification card (green card)

U.S. passport

Unaccepted forms of identification may include the following:

Identification required for notarial services are the same for all 50 states, allowing the use of driver’s licenses, state ID cards, etc., but prohibiting the use of school ID cards, birth certificates, and similar forms of identification. Clients seeking notarial services must bring at least one form of accepted identification. The following listed below are unacceptable.

Birth certificates

Social security cards

School identification cards

Credit cards

Debit cards

Credible witnesses are required to sign an affidavit which states:

The signer of the document is known to the credible witness.

The credible witness believes the signer of the document does not possess an acceptable form of identification.

The credible witness believes the signer of the document is reasonably unable to obtain an acceptable form of identification.

The credible witness has no financial interest or incentive for the document’s execution.

Checking and verifying the signer’s identify is critical step in performing a notarial service. Some people may view it as a nuisance, but it’s performed to safeguard against fraud. So the next time you need a document notarized, remember to bring one of the accepted forms of identification mentioned above.