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Following the effective date of the Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts (RULONA) on October 26, 2017:

POWERS OF A NOTARY PUBLIC
 

Under the Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts (RULONA), notaries public are authorized to perform six notarial acts: 

  • take an acknowledgement
  • administer oaths and affirmations
  • take a verification on oath or affirmation (includes an affidavit)
  • witness or attest a signature
  • certify or attest a copy or deposition and
  • note a protest of a negotiable instrument.
 The requirements for the notarial acts are as follows:
  
Acknowledgments
A notary public who takes an acknowledgment of a record shall determine, from personal knowledge or satisfactory evidence of the identity of the individual, all of the following: 
  1. The individual appearing before the notary public and making the acknowledgment has the identity claimed.
  2. The signature on the record is the signature of the individual.
Administering oaths and affirmations
A notary public who administers an oath or affirmation shall determine, from personal knowledge or satisfactory evidence of the identity of the individual, that the individual appearing before the notary public and making the oath or affirmation has the identity claimed.
 
Verifications on oath or affirmation
A notary public who takes a verification of a statement on oath or affirmation shall determine, from personal knowledge or satisfactory evidence of the identity of the individual, all of the following: 
  1.  The individual appearing before the notary public and making the verification has the identity claimed.
  2. The signature on the statement verified is the signature of the individual.
 
Witnessing or attesting signatures
A notary public who witnesses or attests to a signature shall determine, from personal knowledge or satisfactory evidence of the identity of the individual, all of the following: 
  1. The individual appearing before the notary public and signing the record has the identity claimed.
  2. The signature on the record is the signature of the individual. 
 
Copies
A notary public who certifies or attests a copy of a record or an item which was copied shall determine that the copy is a complete and accurate transcription or reproduction of the record or item. 
 
Negotiable instruments
A notary public who makes or notes a protest of a negotiable instrument shall determine the matters set forth in 13 Pa.C.S. § 3505(b) (relating to evidence of dishonor).

The short form certificates for each of these notarial acts are here

Since a notary commission is granted to a particular individual, a notary public cannot delegate notarial authority to another person. A notary public's commission is not transferable, even on a temporary basis. It is prohibited to permit another person to use your notary public commission and you must safeguard your stamping device and journal at all times. 
 
A Pennsylvania notary public's authority extends to all counties in the Commonwealth. A notary holding a commission issued by the Pennsylvania Department of State may notarize at any location in the Commonwealth. A Pennsylvania notary may not perform notarial acts outside this state.
 
Notaries public in Pennsylvania may not take an application for a marriage license, issue a marriage license or perform a civil marriage ceremony. 

DETERMINING THE IDENTITY OF PERSON APPEARING 
 
All notarial acts (with the exception of certifying or attesting a copy or deposition), require that the individual making the statement or executing the signature must appear personally before the notary public and that the notary public must have personal knowledge or satisfactory evidence of the identity of the individual. 
 
In other words, the customer must be physically present before the notary public when the notarial act is executed. The notary public must be able to observe and interact with the individual making the statement or executing the signature. The notary public and the individual for whom a notarial act is being performed must be able to see, hear, communicate with and give identification documents to each other without the use of electronic devices such as telephones, computers, video cameras or facsimile machines. Personal appearance does not include appearance by video or audio technology, such as Skype or FaceTime.
 
The proper method for determining the identity of a person appearing before a notary under RULONA is either through “personal knowledge” or “satisfactory evidence.” 
 
A notary public has "personal knowledge" of the identity of an individual appearing before the notary if the individual is personally known to the notary through dealings sufficient to provide reasonable certainty that the individual has the identity claimed.
 
A notarial public has “satisfactory evidence” of the identity of an individual appearing before the notary if the notary can identify the individual using any of the following:
    Government-issued identification:
(1) A passport, driver's license or government-issued nondriver identification card, which is current and unexpired.
(2) Another form of government identification issued to an individual, which:
    (a) is current;
    (b) contains the signature or a photograph of the individual; and  
    (c) is satisfactory to the notary public.
By a verification on oath or affirmation of a credible witness personally appearing before the notary public and personally known to the notary public.
 
A notary public may require an individual to provide additional information or identification credentials necessary to assure the notary of the identity of the individual. 
 
AUTHORITY TO REFUSE TO PERFORM NOTARIAL ACT
 
A notary public may refuse to perform a notarial act if the notary is not satisfied that:
 
  • the individual executing the record is competent or has the capacity to execute the record;  
  • the individual's signature is knowingly and voluntarily made;  
  • the individual's signature on the record or statement substantially conforms to the signature on a form of identification used to determine the identity of the individual; or  
  • the physical appearance of the individual signing the record or statement substantially conforms to the photograph on a form of identification used to determine the identity of the individual. 
A notary public may refuse to perform a notarial act unless such refusal is prohibited by law. A notary public may not refuse to provide notarial services on the basis of a customer’s race, color, National origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity (including pregnancy), disability or marital status. 
 
LIMITATION ON NOTARY PUBLIC POWERS – CONFLICT OF INTEREST
 
A notary public may not perform a notarial act with respect to a record in which the notary or the notary's spouse has a direct or pecuniary interest. A direct or pecuniary interest includes an interest in the transaction or record which results in actual or potential gain or advantage, financial or otherwise, other than receiving a regular salary, hourly wage or notarial fees. Regular salary or wage includes bonuses, provided the bonus is not related to or contingent upon the completion of a notarial act.
 
For the purpose of this rule, none of the following shall constitute a direct or pecuniary interest:
 
(i) being a shareholder in a publicly traded company that is a party to the notarized transaction;
(ii) being an officer, director or employee of a company that is a party to the notarized transaction, unless the director, officer or employee personally benefits from the transaction other than as provided under subparagraph (iii); or
(iii) receiving a fee that is not contingent upon the completion of the notarized transaction.
 
A notarial act performed in violation of this subsection is voidable.