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What are the complications in notarizing a Power of Attorney
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What are the complications in notarizing a Power of Attorney
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Posted by Sincere Notary MANTRA Solutions on 10/2/06 10:55pm
Msg #149906

What are the complications in notarizing a Power of Attorney

A local hospital in Oregon recently called me and asked if they want me to be in their Database for notarizing Power of Attorneys for thier patients. I have never done this work and do not know the risks involved. Can somebody guide ??

Reply by BrendaTx on 10/2/06 11:35pm
Msg #149907

Learn your notary laws. If you know that, you don't need to know about risks, the documents, or anything else. There is a story at the link below to illustrate this.


http://www.texas-signing-agent.com/free-notary-book/chapter12.htm

Reply by Blueink_CA on 10/3/06 12:20am
Msg #149909

Expect issues such as expired ID, questionable competency and incomplete documents. As Brenda said, make sure you know your states notary laws, and be prepared for any circumstance.

Reply by BrendaTx on 10/3/06 6:52am
Msg #149916

Public Notary First - NSA Second

This would be the desired order of things. That way, notaries would not get their notary commission confused with being anything more than it is.

When we learn to do this gig as NSA first, we might mistakenly assume that the role of notary is also the role of knowing about all notarized documents. After all, as an NSA we are supposed to know a little bit about our packages. That's where confusion comes in. That's being a signing agent who is familiar with loan docs.

It's good to be familiar with the documents you might be called to notarize, but not necessary in order to notarize as long as you know how to notarize according to your state's rules.

All I ever needed to know about being a notary public is located in my notary educational materials.


Reply by Becca_FL on 10/3/06 8:34am
Msg #149921

Re: What are the complications in notarizing a Power of Atto

Some complications that may occur when notarizing a POA include:

Paper cuts, broken nails, pen runs out of ink, signer is so hopped up on goofballs said signer a) passes out on POA or b) drools all over POA and notary journal. And the WORST thing that can happen while notarizing a POA in a hospital...you get flashed by the signer when the hospital grown comes untied.


Reply by Kate/CA on 10/3/06 8:38am
Msg #149922

Ask questions before going ........

Asked whoever calls you if the POA is COMPLETELY filled out. Many of them will be a HealthCare directive POA, and they will want you to help them fill it out. Question if the person signing has CURRENT ID that is consistant with your notary law.

I do this for a hospital that has an elderly care near me. These are the problems I run into here. Also you might find out if the hospital has an Omsbudsman. Here they must go thru the Omsbudsman if the patient is there for extend care. If it is a POA, I get an O.K. for every POA from the hospital before I will notarieze. The patient can sign a health care directive POA, but the family trys to slip in a General POA and they can't do that. Find out what all the rules are for that hospital.

Wish I still lived up there.

Reply by PAW on 10/3/06 11:14am
Msg #149957

Re: Ask questions before going ........ I disagree

>>> If it is a POA, I get an O.K. for every POA from the hospital before I will notarieze. The patient can sign a health care directive POA, but the family trys to slip in a General POA and they can't do that. Find out what all the rules are for that hospital. <<<

You are there as a Notary Public. That's all, nothing more, nothing less. If the instrument is complete and the signer understands what they are signing (and all other notarial requirements are met), it is not your place to determine if the instrument is valid, or even contains correct information.

As the saying goes, don't analyze, just notarize.

Reply by BrendaTx on 10/3/06 11:30am
Msg #149960

Re: Ask questions before going ........ I disagree--thanks

Paul!!!!

We are not attorneys or the legal police force. We are notaries.

Repeating it:

All I ever needed to know about being a notary is in the free educational materials from my state.

Reply by Kate/CA on 10/3/06 12:05pm
Msg #149968

Re: Ask questions before going ........ I disagree

Paul

Some of these patients bills are being paid by the state, when the family members slip in these POA in this create problems with the the billing. The patient are in for long care, with the understanding that the equity in their house will take care of their care, I know they do this in Oregon also. Many hospitals have Omsbudman for the patient. Why not make sure there is no problem? It is better than having to spend a day in court later. If a person is going to be on call for a hospital they should know the rules. I heard of one case, where the family member slipped in a POA, sold the house, took the equity and the patient had to find less accomodating nursing care.

I had one case where the Omsbudman called me to do a Healthcare, Omsbudman told me I could notarize the Healthcare directive POA for this lady, but no other POA, this was from a directive from her attorney. Sure enough her husband tried to get me to do a regular POA so he could sell some of her property. His name wasn't on title.

You are not refusing, just advising that they need to go thru the hospital Omsbudman. I would rather be on the side of the patient, the patient may be on medication and may appear normal, but you never know what family member has taken care of the paper work for whose benefit.

This is what the hospital in my area requires, they don't let other take advantage of the patients.

Reply by PAW on 10/3/06 12:26pm
Msg #149975

Re: Ask questions before going ........ I disagree

I understand what you are saying, Kate, and I fully support the need to ensure that all the ducks are in a row. However, it is NOT the notary's responsibility to ensure that they are. Interjecting into a matter to which you have no background information, may be misconstrued by the signer, their family, the hospital, etc. This may result in legal action as you are "advising" the patient in a matter in which you do not have training or credentials to do so. You may even be subject to UPL, depending on what you say and how it is interpreted by the patient and family.

Unless you are employed by the hospital to verify the information and procedure, or otherwise qualified in patient care and hospital procedures, I submit you are wrong to question the instrument in any capacity other than that of a Notary Public.



Reply by Gerry_VT on 10/3/06 3:38pm
Msg #149999

Re: Ask questions before going ........ I disagree

It would seem to me that when dealing with a person who needs nursing home care, a notary would be justified in using some extra care in establishing that the patient understands the general nature documents. "Mrs. Smith, do you understand the difference between a health care directive and a general power of attorney?" If she gives a sensible answer, go ahead; if not, don't notarize anything. Establishing that the signer understands the nature and likely consequences of the document is a notary responsibility.


 
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