Notario vs. Public Notary

Identifying the difference between a “Notario” and a Notary Public

Notarios are not lawyers

It is easy to confuse the definition of a “Notario” and a “Notary” when the words appear strikingly similar.  However, a “Notario” should not be confused with a “Notary.”

A “Notario” is a non-lawyer who is engaged in the unauthorized practice of law by performing immigration-related services; and often times, charging exorbitant prices and promising unrealistic dreams to unsuspecting immigrants.  Notarios may advertise their services under the guise of a “Notary Public.”  It is important to note that Notarios are not licensed attorneys nor accredited representatives by the U.S. government to provide immigration-related services.  In certain Latin American countries, the word Notario means a lawyer.  In the United States, this title is not recognized.

In the state of North Carolina, a Notary Public is a person who is appointed by the state to perform notarial acts pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 10B.  Notarial acts that may be performed by a notary includes: taking an acknowledgment, taking a verification or proof, and administering an oath or affirmation.  Each of these specific acts have requirements that distinguishes one from another, but all of these acts requires: (a) that an individual appeared in person before the notary and (b) that the individual was personally known to the notary or that the individual was identified by the notary through satisfactory evidence, such as a government issued identification card.  Therefore, identifying an individual is one of the most important role of a notary and the first step towards the main purpose as a notary, which is to help protect the public through the prevention of fraud and forgery.

At Musinguzi Law Group (MLG), from experience we have successfully developed a formula for weeding out “Notario” mix-ups and/or sorting out the mess they leave behind. Also Notary Public services are available at no extra cost for our esteemed clients.

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