Alert: California Notaries – AB 477
June 30, 2013 at 8:44am
“This is about California Assembly Bill 477. Time is growing short to be heard.
Readthe entire bill here: http://goo.gl/aMMy5
Notaries in California should contact their Senators and in particularly, the members of the Judiciary committee of the Senate about AB 477. Let them hear from you. Contact links are below.
Bill description: This bill would include notaries public in the definition of mandated reporters of suspected financial abuse of an elder or dependent adult and would require a notary public, except as provided,to report known or suspected instances of financial abuse of an elder or dependent adult if the notary public has observed or has knowledge of suspected financial abuse in connection with providing notary services.
The bill would also prohibit a notary public from performing a notarial act for an elder or dependent adult under specified circumstances, including when, in the notary public’s judgment, the elder or dependent adult is not acting of his or her own free will.
Notes: It sounds acceptable at first glance,but the problem is that notaries who do not report problems will be subject to fines and penalties. Existing law makes a violation of the reporting requirements subject to a civil penalty.
The problem: Notaries will be required to learn legal definitions that this bill relates to. They will be reluctant to work with elders for fear of punishment or fines. This is not good for notaries or senior citizens. This bill has passed through the Assembly and is now under consideration for hearing in the Judiciary Committee.
Write the Judiciary committee members first, and follow up with a letter or call to your senator.
Judiciary Committee contacts: http://sjud.senate.ca.gov/
Find your California senator: http://senate.ca.gov/senators
If you want to have input, you must do so immediately. We welcome comments from California notaries on how to help you with this matter.