A Rhode Island notary acknowledgment form authenticates a person’s signature on a legal document. The signing party can present themselves to a notary public and show proof of identity if the notary public doesn’t personally know the signatory.
The notary public confirms the signing party’s identity and witnesses their signature, ensuring the signing party didn’t sign the document by coercion. This acknowledgment form is useful to confirm the authenticity of signatures on documents like wills, living trusts, and bills of sale.
Form of Acknowledgement: According to § 34-12-1, the acknowledgment doesn’t need to be in any set form. It must only recognize that the magistrate knew all parties and understood they signed the document according to their free will.
Notary Term of Commission: Four years. (R.I. Gen. Laws § 42-30.1-15(f)).
Notary Handbook: The Notary Public Handbook defines a notary public, lists the requirements, and discusses other related information for notaries in the state.
Is Online Notarization Legal in Rhode Island?
Yes. Two bills passed on June 30, 2002, Senate Bill 2705 and House Bill 7363, allow remote online notarization. The notary must be physically in Rhode Island when acknowledging the signatures, but the signing party and the notary can communicate via two-way communication devices.
The notary public must keep a record of the remote act for at least ten years. Also, they can charge no more than $25 for their services.
How to Notarize
Step 1 – Locate a Notary
Locate a notary in your area. Visit your local credit union or bank (like Bank Rhode Island), as many financial institutions offer notary services. You can also inquire about these services at businesses like FedEx Offices or UPS stores.
Step 2 – Bring Your Document
Bring the document (like a bill of sale) you want the notary to authenticate. Ensure you’ve filled out all required fields in the document. If your document also requires witnesses, bring them with you as well.
Step 3 – Present Your ID
You must show a valid form of ID, which can be one of the following:
- Driver’s license
- Government-issued non-driver identification card
Step 4 – Sign the Form
Sign the legal document you brought with you and let the notary witness your signature. If you’ve signed the document prior to attending your notary appointment, you must confirm that the signature is yours and that you signed it without someone forcing you.
Allow the notary to complete the authentication process by signing their name on the acknowledgment form. They’ll date the form and add their seal if necessary.
How to Verify a Notary
- Visit the Rhode Island Department of State’s Notary Public Status Search.
- Search for the notary you want to verify by name or commission number. Initiate your search by clicking “Search Using Part of Name” or “Search Using Commission Number.”
- Look over the search results and review the notary’s commission status.
How to Write (for Notary)
- Download a notary acknowledgment form in PDF or Word format.
- Write the county of notarization, your name, and the date.
- Record the name of the signatory and the type of ID they presented.
- Write the document you’re acknowledging and the number of pages it has.
- Sign your name and include your seal/stamp.