SOURCE: National Notary Association

September 29, 2005 18:32 ET

National Notary Association Urges Notaries Public to Provide Free Services to Hurricane Victims

Coordinated Effort by Notaries Public Already Underway in Louisiana to Provide Pro-Bono Services to Displaced Residents; NNA Issues Recommendations for Accommodating Katrina and Rita Survivors Without Identification

LOS ANGELES, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- September 29, 2005 -- The National Notary Association (NNA) is calling upon all commissioned Notaries Public to assist with relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina and Rita by providing pro-bono services to victims affected by the storms. In the 10 states designated as reception states for evacuees, the NNA has issued recommendations to Notaries to provide guidance in identifying individuals without adequate identification documents.

"For more than 200 years, America's Notaries have provided service to both their communities and their country with pride and distinction," said NNA Vice President and Executive Director, Timothy S. Reiniger. "Once again, Notaries have demonstrated their compassion and generosity for their fellow citizens by joining in the relief efforts for both Katrina and Rita."

Notaries in Louisiana have already coordinated efforts with the state's Department of Revenue to provide pro-bono services at the tax agency's five regional offices. Notaries will help expedite tax refunds and other claims by displaced taxpayers requiring notarized signatures. Additional information for Louisiana taxpayers can be accessed on the Revenue Department's homepage, http://www.rev.state.la.us/.

"Our foremost responsibility as public officials is supporting our communities," said Mrs. Tim Estes, a NNA Notary Ambassador who is also President of the Professional Civil Law Notary Association in Shreveport. "Notaries from throughout Louisiana have selflessly stepped forward to help our fellow citizens during this time of great need."

Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco has also issued an executive order authorizing Notaries who are residents of Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammy or Washington Parish to perform notarizations outside their parish of residence without additional bonding requirements.

The NNA recently issued recommendations to the 10 evacuee reception states instructing Notaries on how to lawfully identify evacuees who are without identity documents and who are not personally known to a Notary Public. These recommendations are in adherence with each state's notarial laws and allow for evacuation shelter managers or fellow acquaintances to serve as credible witnesses for evacuees. These recommendations can be downloaded at NationalNotary.org.

Examples of notarization services that will be most urgently needed in the ten reception states, which are Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and West Virginia include:

1. Oaths and affirmations to obtain driver's licenses and birth
   certificates
2. Insurance claims related to life and property
3. Financial assistance documents
4. Unemployment claims
5. Affidavits and depositions for litigation
 
The NNA: Setting the Standard for America's Professional Notary

Founded in 1957, the National Notary Association (NNA) is committed to the professional development of Notaries throughout the United States by providing education, support and advocacy. The NNA educates law makers, businesses and state officials on best notarial practices and leads efforts to make necessary changes in state and federal statutory framework.

Important Links

Louisiana Department of Revenue: http://www.rev.state.la.us/
Federal Emergency Management Agency: http://www.fema.gov/
National Notary Association: http://www.NationalNotary.org

Contact Information

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    National Notary Association
    (818) 739-4024
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