Author: n3notary

6 Notary Rules for Completing an I-9 Form

A s Notary Public whether in house or mobile from time to time you may be asked to complete an I-9 Form for a remote hire employee.

If you never have completed one before than it can be rather intimidating.  Most folks will come in for a vista or give you a call and ask that you notarize an I-9.  Taking a close look at the form you can plainly see that the from does not contain any notarial language.  This is because it is no a Notarial act, and does not require a notarization.

The reason you are being asked to notarize the document is that most folks out side of Notary Public’s do not really understand the roll and duties of a Notary.  The employer tell the employee to find a Notary and get the I9 notarized.  This confusion leads to the Notaries being confused about what can and can not be done with regards to the I-9 From.

It really is quite a simple process if you understand what the form is for, how to fill it out and where to draw the line between acting as on authorized agent and working as a Notary Public.

An I-9 Form is required to be completed each time a US company hires an employee for a job based in the US.   Many companies hire employees remotely, also know as remote hires.

When a company has a remote hire that needs to have an I9 completed they have 2 options.  One is that the employer and employee must meet in person.  This is not always a cost effective option.  The second is to have the employer designate an agent to complete the I-9 Form on their behalf.  This is where the use of a Notary comes in.  Once you are designated as the agent you can assist the employee in completing the I-9.

When completing the I-9 your primary responsibility is in completing section 2.  In this section the agent will be entering information from the ID(s) provided to the employee.  It can be a bit tricky at first and there are a few rules you need to know in order to complete the form correctly.

Rule one, if there is an error in section 2 the liability is with the employer not on the Notary/authorized agent.

Rule two, never put your stamp on the I9.  This is not a Notarial act, and in almost all states Notaries are prohibited from using their stamp for non notarial acts.

Rule three,  always use valid ID when completing the I9.  Never use copies of have the employee fax you copies of the ID.  This practice is more common than most employers want to admit to.

Rule four,  only use one List A document or use 1 List B document and 1 List C document when completing the I9 Form.  If you have any questions about what type of ID is or is not acceptable review the list of acceptable documents available with the I9 From.

Rule five,  you do need to sign, date, enter your title and print your name as requested in section 2 of the I9.

Rule six, never sign and notarize a letter stating that you have reviewed documents for XYZ employee.  While it is necessary for you to sign a Remote Hire Agency form you should never be notarizing your own signature.

There are several Nationwide Notary services like N3 Notary that specialize in I-9 Form for remote hires, and provide training and guidance for completing I-9’s correctly.

Once you get a few of these under your belt you will be head and shoulders above those Mobile Notary services that still think it’s illegal.

 

Nationwide Notary Services and the Angry Mobile Notary

As a Nationwide service we have worked with tens of thousands of Mobile Notaries.  Some of whom are awesome beyond belief, and truly become trusted partners with the Signing Service.  The really bad ones will leave a lasting impression, give the team a good laugh and put them straight on their do not call list.

It tends to be the angry ones that hit the notary forms and vent for all to hear.  Their one sided account of situations can be comical, and at the same time damaging not just to the Notary service but to other Notaries that rely on Notary Forms as a way to run a credit check of sorts.  These posts can make it harder for other Mobile Notaries to trust signings services, because it is almost all bad most of the time.

From slow pay to low pay, to no pay too ideal threats to report the signing service to every regulatory body in America and the Better Business bureau too. Perhaps it is the Mobile Notary that created the situation that lead to a slow pay or no pay.

As a newbie Mobile Notary Business there is so much information to process, so many no-no list to read, and so many angry notaries to avoid if you want to have a successful run.  To see through it all and confidently say yes to a signing service while other are saying no, try the following.

Always say yes when you are called for an appointment.

Have a limit to how much business in dollars you are willing to perform with out being paid.

Have a system in place that addresses non payment issues that still maintains the relationship.

Never ever take it personally when you are not paid.  If you can not then turn your non payments over to an employee to do it for you.

Understand your roll and the roll of the Signing Service.

Do not leave your decision on working with a company with the Notary boards.

If you need to be paid 100% of the time, than go get a job, being a business owner is not for you.

Do not use the Notary Boards as a way of checking the credibility of the Notary Service.

For the most part Notary Forms are a great place to socialize, ask questions and tell a funny story from time to time.  Be aware that others use them as a way to damage the repudiation of Nationwide Mobile Notary Service providers or other Notary Publics.

How to find a Notary for an I-9 Form

You thought this would be easy.  You have a new job, hired to work remotely, and you are excited.  Your new employer has emailed you the on boarding documents that included an I-9 Form and maybe… hopefully some instructions on how to get the I9 completed.  They have told you to locate a notary to get the form completed, maybe even notarized.

If you are unsure why you need to compete an  Form I-9 click here  for more information.

What they did not tell you is that this is not easy, in fact, it can be down right frustrating.

First thing you should understand is that you are not alone, this is not personal.  There are challenges that employees and employers face when locating a notary that is willing and able to complete an I-9 with a remote hire.

Most Notary Public’s have never completed an I9 before.  So it seems normal that they would feel uncomfortable with the process.  Add that feeling of discomfort to rule number one for Notaries; if you do not feel comfortable with Notarizing the documents, then don’t, and they wont.

So you say something along the lines of “but the document does not need to be notarized,” leading the Notary to question why you would be asking for them to assist you in the first place.  Which leads them back to rule one and you’re still searching, counting the phone calls and miles driven.

But your in luck because you found this article, and we can not only help you to find a Notary, but also provide you with a few tips to make the process easy and compliant.

Quick tip number one. 

If you are going to walk in and visit with a Notary, say at your local mail box store, call ahead of time and make sure the Notary will be working on the day and time you are planning on coming in.  Go the extra mile and ask to speak with them if they happen to be in when you call.  Ask them if they would be willing to assist you with completing an I-9 Form, follow up the question and ask if they have any experience with completing the form.

Quick tip 2

Use a listing service like NotaryRotary.com to locate a Notary is your area rather than Google.  These listing services are easy to use.  Enter in a zip code and a list of Notaries that service the area will be displayed.  You should know that most of the folks that you find on the site offer a mobile notary service.  You should expect to pay a higher fee than a typical walk-in service.  Rates of $25 – $50 are common and fair.

Quick tip 3

Only complete section 1 of the I-9 Form before meeting with the Notary.  Never complete section 2.  It is the responsibility of the Notary to complete section 2 of the I9.  Go the extra mile on this one and only bring with you the ID(s) that you will use to prove your ability to legally work in the US.

Being that most notaries will not have experience in completing the I-9 correctly your best bet is to review the list of acceptable documents available here, and then show the notary either the List A document, or the List B and C documents that are required so the form can be completed correctly.  It is never a good idea to put a bunch of IDs on the table and have the notary figure it out.

Again you are not alone in this, but we hope these quick tips can help make finding a notary a bit easier on you.

Quick tip for business. 

Call N3 Notary at 800.455.1146  We are experts in making the I-9 verification process for remote hires, quick simple and compliant.

How to properly use a Notary to complete an I-9 Form

Remote hiring has become an increasingly popular way for employers to tap into a larger pool of talent.  One of the challenges employers face with their remote employees, is in processing I-9 Forms correctly when using a Notary Public.  Finding a Notary at a local UPS store is a simple process, however having the Notary complete the form correctly as well as following up with the Notary for any corrections or questions can seem impossible.

It’s important the employers that regularly hire employees remotely build a system that will meet the compliance standards.  There are 4 key areas of focus when thinking about how to improve a current system or implement a new one.

First inform your employee of what is needed to properly complete the I-9.  Let them know of their start date and the date that they need to complete section 2 by.  Employees should be made aware that a Notary may lack experience with the I-9 as well as the common areas where mistakes are made.

Provide clear written instructions that your employee can give to the Notary.  Again keep in mind that most Notaries may not have experience with filling out the I-9.  It’s a good idea to put your contact phone number on the instruction sheet so that the Notary can call you should there be any questions on filling out the from.

Have the employee get the Notaries name, phone number and e-mail address.  This will make it easy for you to follow up with the Notary should there be a correction needed.

Ask the Notary complete a form that designates them as your authorized agent for completing the I-9 form.  Ask for their commission information, including commission number, expiration and the state they are licensed in.

You may also want to consider using an electronic I-9 management system to help reduce errors with in your remote hire process.

Remote hiring is here to stay and meeting the challenges of properly verifying employment eligibility of the employee is the sole responsibility of the employer.  By recognizing the problems you face by using a Notary to compete the I-9 Form, keeping your employee informed and retaining contact information on the Notary, you can improve your process and feel more secure in meeting I-9 form compliance standards.