|I agree with Janet. In CT an "acknowledgment" is the signer, who provided proof of satisfactory identity, stating to the Notary Public s/he signed the document presented for notarization. I believe NC law for an acknowledgment is the same.
The date the person signed is the date s/he pre-signed the document, which doesn't have to be the date the document was brought before the Notary to be notarized. The Notary takes the signers "acknowledgement" that s/he signed the document on X date. The Notary completes an "acknowledgement" notarization block which INCLUDES the date the Notary took the signer's acknowledgment aka the date the Notary signed. Hence, two dates: a signature date and a notarization date.
As a Notary, I prefer to have acknowledgments signed in front of me; but it is not required by law. When a document is previously signed, depending on the circumstances, I may have the signer sign a second time above the first signature. If nothing else, I carefully inspect both the document signature and identification signatures to make sure they match and note both the signature and notarization dates in my journal.
We can't be sure what was said to the Help Line person and what that person "heard" to reply "it's fraud". Experienced paralegal: what is said and what is heard can be two different things; i.e., if you don't ask the specific right questions, you'll give the wrong answer. When in doubt, I ask my Secretary of State legal department.