A notary credible witness is someone who has agreed to legally vouch for the signer’s identity when they cannot produce valid identification for themselves. This allows the notary to execute the documents in the absence of a state-recognized valid identification, such as a driver’s license.
All states that allow the notary to use one credible witness have the requirement that the credible witness must personally know the signer of the document, and the notary must personally know the credible witness. The credible witness cannot have a financial interest in nor is a party to the transaction. Please refer to your Notary Primer handbook that covers the appropriate notary laws and requirements for your specific state.
Currently, there are only eight states that permit the usage of two credible identifying witnesses who aren’t known by the Notary: California, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Virginia. To use the two credible witnesses, you must obtain the following information:
- Both witnesses complete the credible witness affidavit
- The notary administers a verbal oath/affirmation to both witnesses, then completes the jurat section of the affidavit
The following information must be recorded in the notary journal
- The signature of each credible witness
- The type of written identification presented for each credible witness
- The serial or identifying number on each credible witness’ written identification
- The issue or expiration date on each credible witness’ written identification