NYS Notary License Test Study Guide

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When can a N.P. re-apply for commission without re-testing?

1, Up Until 6 months from expiration date. 2. Up until 1 year after military discharge (except dishonorable) 3. When the renewal is mailed to the N.P. reminding that expiration date is in 3 months.

Who is appointed to accept process service on behalf of the N.P. who is a non-resident?

Secretary of State

Can an N.P. be denied re-appointment at time of renewal... even if in excellent, good standing?

Yes... in any case the appointment is at the complete discretion of the Secretary of State.

What are the general NP eligibility requirements... although not limited to these?

1. US Citizen 2. Reside or have a place of business in the state. 3. Good moral character. 4. Common School Education. 5. No felony convictions. No convictions of weapons, burglar instruments or burglary, stolen property, unlawful entry, aiding prison escape, possession/distributing drugs, violations of selective draft act. 6. 18 years old.

Does NP receive an ID or license?

YES... receives an ID card within 2 weeks of Secretary of State receipt of passed exam with fee and application.

What is the term of the NP commission?

4 Years.

Who issues the NP ID/License?

Secretary of State. The Division of Licensing Services.

How does the NP renew his license and when?

Approximately 3 months prior to the expiration a renewal application is posted to the NP... which must be completed and returned with the $60.00 fee to the County Clerk.

What does a NP do?

1. Administer oaths/affirmations. 2. Take affidavits & depositions. 3. Receive/certify acknowledgments, deeds, mortgages, power of attorney. 4. Demand/acceptance or payment of foreign & inland bills of exchange, promissory notes & obligations in writing protesting the same for non-payment.

Who commissions or licenses NP?

Secretary of State forwards the commissions, the original oath of office and signature of the newly appointed NP to the county clerk.

What happens when a NP moves out of the state and does not at least retain an office address within the state?

By doing so he vacates his office/commission.

How many NP's can a Secretary of State appoint?

As many as he likes.

What are the general regulations and procedures at the test center?

1. Photo ID 2. Thumb print taken 3. Arrive at least 15 minutes early 4. First come first serve 5. Bring two #2 pencils 6. No study materials allowed 7. 1 hour to take the test, 40 multiple choice questions, 70% correct passes (28)

What are 4 examples of activities involving the practice of law which are prohibited for the NP & can result in the removal from the office, possible imprisonment or both?

1. Giving advice on law, drawing papers or any legal documents recognized by the courts. 2. Asking for or getting legal business to give to a lawyer and getting paid. (it's ok to give business to a lawyer if not being paid). 3. Notary service in wills. 4. Doing anything that infers you can give advice like advertising.

When are the only times a NP can engage indirectly in the practice of law?

NEVER!!! Unless representing own self.

Of the 2 simplest forms of oath... what is required for both?

Oath/Affirmation: 1. Person whose oath is being taken must be in the presence of authorized office (NP) to administer it. 2. It must be an unequivocal & present act by which the affiant consciously takes upon himself the obligation of oath.

What is the alternate simplest form in which an oath may be administered for those who conscientiously decline taking an oath?

Affirmation - "Do you solemnly, sincerely and truly declare and affirm that the statements made by you are true and correct?"

Unacceptable to the Secretary of State is "slipshod" administration. What is the simplest form which an oath may lawfully be administered by the NP?

"Do you solemnly swear that the contents of this affidavit subscribed by you is correct and true?"

What happens if a document is notarized by a person who is not actually a NP?

Section 142-A of the Executive Law deems it valid although the fake NP can still be prosecuted.

What choice does a woman notary who marries have for name use?

1. Married name 2. Both Maiden and Married Name 3. Maiden name for Life

What are the NP licensing fees?

1. $15.00 exam 2. $60.00 license, renew 3. $10.00 change name & address 4. $10.00 duplicate ID cards.

When is the one time you may take acknowledgments/affidavits over the phone or without actually seeing the person making (signing) the acknowledgment?

Never! It is illegal.

How is the deviation or departing from the "step by step" procedures required of the NP viewed by the authorities?

1. Serious offense. 2. Illegal. 3. Subjects NP license to revocation and/or prosecution.

Can a non-state resident be a NP in the state?

YES... 1. We can work in the state and may reside outside state. 2. Non-residents working within the state. 3. Oath of office & signature must still be filed in county of their office.

When would the County Clerk normally be called upon to authenticate the signature of the NP? What is the fee?

When documents will be used outside the State. $3.00 Fee.

How will you be notified and your exam result and what do you do next when passed?

Passed slip is mailed to you. Fill out application & return with fee. Failed slip is mailed to you... you may retake exam immediately. New exam schedules from the state are updated two times per year. You are not advised what you got wrong.

What type of exam is given?

$15.00 fee. Multiple choice 40 questions on a machine readable score sheet, 70% or 28 correct answers to pass. Topice are LAw general terms and info related to the duties & functions outlined in the "Notary Public License Law Booklet".

Who maintains a record of the NP signature made available for public access and verification of official signature?

The County Clerk

Where are NP's commissioned?

In the county of residence or county of business in the state if residing out of state.

Can a person convicted of a criminal offense become a NP?

Yes...with an executive pardon of certificate of "Good Conduct" from the parole board... the person will be eligible.

Can anyone become a NP without taking the NP exam?

An attorney and court clerks already practicing in the state do not take the exam.

May a NP charge a fee?

Yes. $2.00

How do the courts hold an acknowlement taken by a person financially or beneficially interested as a party to conveyance?

Nullity-Void-No Good.

What are the powers in general for the NP?

1. Oaths and affirmations 2. Affidavits and depositions 3. Acknowledgments, deeds, mortgages, powers of attorney and other instruments in writing. 4. Demand acceptance of payment foreign and inland bills of exchange, promissory notes and obligations in writing and protest the same for non-acceptance and non-payment.

No NP shall be suspended or removed for misconduct unless what procedure occurs first?

NP has been served with a copy of the charges and gets an opportunity of being heard.

How do the courts hold an assignment of mortgage taken before or by a NP who is an assignee (having interest)?

Null-Void-No Good.

What instances disqualify the NP in certain cases although still remaining eligible to hold office?

1. Having pecuniary interest or benefiting in the action. 2. Are a party directly or indirectly of the transaction.

Can a member of the legislature be appointed with a NP commission?

Yes...but if being paid they vacate their seat in the legislature and power of appointment is transferred from governor and senate to S.O.S.

Can a Sheriff become a NP?

No. Sheriffs shall hold any other office.

Can a legislator also hold a civil office (be a Notary) in the NYS government?

Yes. Provided not being paid. A legislator cannot hold a civil state office if receiving compensation.

Does the County Clerk provide NP services to the general public?

Yes. The County Clerk shall have one designated for business hours. Note that the County Clerk's staff is exempt from fees for exam ($15) and application ($60)

Can one incorporator who is a NP take the acknowledgment of the other incorporator?

No. That would make the acknowledgment Null and Void. They both are parties to the instrument and sign it.

What are the acceptable ways the signature & seal of the County Clerk can be presented?

Facsimile, printed, stamped, photographed, or engraved thereon (don't confuse with NP signature/seal).

What is on the NP ID card issued by the Secretary of State?

ID Number, Name, Address, County, Commission Term, Expiration date.

What are the procedures of appointment & fees after the "Test Passed" notification is received by you?

1. Submit application, $60.00 fee, passed exam slip with executed (notarized oath of office to SOS). 2. SOS satisfied...issues NO commission and ID card which are mailed. 3. $20.00 is mailed to CC from SOS by 10th day of following month. 4. CC keeps commission & signature on file.

Can a person admitted to to practice as an attorney within the state - who's office is in the state - but reside outside the state be a NP in NYS?

Yes. He is deemed a resident of the county where he maintains the office.

What convictions shall block NP appointment?

Any felony convictions of illegal weapns, making/possessing burglar equipment, buying/receiving/possession of stolen property, unlawful entry, aiding prison escape, possession/distributing narcotics and violating the Selective Draft Act. Vagrancy and prostitution unless executive pardon or cert of good conduct is given.

What are the reasons to be suspended or removed from NP commission?

Misconduct.

Where can any NP file his signature and certificate of official character and who issues it upon request?

The office of the County Clerk in any county in the state ($10.00 filing fee) and in any registers office. The SOS and CC can issue a certificate of official character for a pee paid by client.

What are the fees associated with issuance of Certificate of Official Character?

1. SOS = $10.00 2. CC = $10.00

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