What is a Notary Public?
A notary public acts as an impartial third-party witness to not only the signature of a document, but also that all parties who signed a document did so willingly and under their own free will.
Our Notary Services
All staff of Student Legal Services (“SLS”) has a notary commission, and we provide services to current students, current staff, and retired staff.
- This service is free
- No appointment is necessary
- Walk-ins are welcome as follows:
Monday – Friday: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm. (closed one hour for lunch)
Monday – Friday: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm (please come no later than 4:45 pm)
Notary Services We Provide
- Notarizing various documents. We can notarize documents such as wills, affidavits, and power of attorneys (please note that non-attorney staff cannot assist or advise you in the completion of forms or give any type of legal advice).
- True Copy Certification. This is a duplicate of an original document that is certified as a true copy by the officer having custody of the original. Michigan notaries are prohibited from issuing certified copies of any records or documents. However, attorneys are permitted to do so and one of our attorneys can assist you. Please note that even attorneys cannot make true copy certifications for vital records such as birth certificates and marriage licenses.
- Documents for Apostille. An apostille is issued for documents intended for use only in foreign countries that are party to the Hague Treaty. The original document must be signed in front of a notary and must contain original signatures. We only provide the notary service. You, the client, must then complete the process by having the document apostilled through the state of Michigan. For more information, please review the state of Michigan's website.
Notary Services We Can Not Provide
- Notarizing Employment Documents. One of a notaries primary functions is to verify the identity of a signer to a document and then view the signing of that document. However, we are not permitted by law to verify your identity only (i.e. for security clearances required in some pre-employment processes).
- Verifying Documentation for I-9 Forms. By law, the verification of documents is not a notarial act.
- Make True Copy Statements. A notary cannot certify that a document is a true copy in the state of Michigan.
The Notarization Process
Before you come to SLS, please note the following:
- Do not sign the document(s) prior to coming to SLS. If you have signed the document, you will be asked to re-sign in the notary's presence.
- Please bring a valid, government issued photo ID (drivers license, state ID, passport).
- Typically the name on your ID must match the name on the document. If it does not, please call ahead so that we can discuss your situation.
- Please make sure that any and all required blanks are completed prior to coming to SLS.
- Please review your document. If witnesses are needed, please call in advance to make sure that we have enough staff in the office.
Once at SLS, please note the following:
- You will be asked for your ID to confirm your identity, as well as, your signature on the ID will be reviewed.
- You will be asked if you are familiar with the document and are signing freely.
- You will be asked to sign the document(s) in front of the notary.
- You will be asked to complete our notary log.