DEFINITION of 'Notary'

Also called a "notary public," this state-appointed official witnesses important document signings and verifies the identities of the signers to help deter fraud and identity theft. A notarized document will contain the seal and signature of the notary who witnessed the signing and will have more legal weight than a document that is not notarized. Document signings where consumers are likely to need the services of a notary include real estate deeds, affidavits, wills, trusts and powers of attorney.


Becoming a notary can make a person a more attractive job candidate for certain positions and/or provide a valuable source of side income. The required training is fairly minimal and inexpensive; requirements vary by state, but may involve taking a course and/or exam.

  1. Mortgage

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    A legal document that grants the bearer a right or privilege, ...
  5. Will

    A legally enforceable declaration of how a person wishes his ...
  6. Power Of Attorney

    A legal document giving one person (called an "agent" or "attorney-in-fact") ...
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