Seconds for Notaries - On the "rebound" can be profitable

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Seconds for Notaries

Seconds can represent a good deal. Consider a pricey coat that has some wayward stitches. Visible or on the inside, they don’t affect performance and use of the garment. The makers’ quality control people cull them aside for non-top tier vendors. What has this got to do with notaries? The answer is that we are often offered “seconds” as assignments. No, I’m not referring to assignments that come from the “middle people” or Signing Services. Here I will be referring to assignments that “need doing” but were, for whatever reason; not processed by the first notary to be assigned the project.

The calling party happened to be a Signing Service (SS). The SS was genuinely frantic. It seems that their notary had just “turned back” the assignment; an hour prior to “show time”. The SS gave me a surprising amount of detail. Notary One could not confirm the appointment as the affiant was not answering their phone; nor did they respond to a few voice mail “call me” requests. An additional complexity: the signing was to take place at a café in Grand Central Terminal. (It’s Terminal, not Station; because NYC is “the end of the line.) With just an hour remaining the notary bailed out; good move or bad move – the SS was now on the spot. They had reported to their client that all was well; they were in panic mode.

Of course what they wanted me to do was impossible. With only an hour on the clock, I would need to print and go to a very congested place, find a café in it; and find the borrower. Normally I would not consider the absurd; but, my schedule permitted an attempt. I offered the SS “best efforts” and cautioned that I would certainly be at least half an hour late. “Great, we will send the docs over, right now!” Whoa, slow down a bit, I need to clarify “best efforts” before you send me anything.

A best effort means exactly that. However, the assignment will be taken at your risk. First, you process my fee, now, on my website. After payment send me the docs. I start printing only after my fee is received. We don’t work that way, the now calm and cool SS voice replied. You will have to accept payment from closing funds after we receive them. I suppressed a chuckle, noting their use of “you will have to”; as if they represented The King, and I was a serf.

I don’t want to run down your already perilous time situation; it’s time to terminate this call and you can call somebody else. Can you please wait a bit, the SS asked; let me check with the owner. That would be the spouse, as the squalling baby and barking dog could be clearly heard. The owner says you will have to do the signing and wait for your pay. Good bye, I said, I hope you find the notary you are looking for; it’s certainly not me.

For that would usually be the end of the story. But, fortune turned my way. Half an hour later “Title” called with the same named borrower. They were willing to meet my terms and called the borrower to reschedule; at the residence. They must have had a personal cell contact number. The new location was convenient to me and the appointment was to be in two hours. There was plenty of time to print the docs, after receiving a payment confirmation from PayPal.  Routinely paid, routinely processed; the way it should be.


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Kenneth Edelstein

The only A+ Accredited BBB NYC Notary
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