One way many notaries expand their services is by offering a service that doesn’t involve a notarization at all.
Effective in 1986, the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) required all employers to start verifying their employees identification and eligibility to work in the United States.
In order to comply with IRCA, employers must complete Section 2 of a document titled the Employment Eligibility Verification form. The employee fills out their part of the form in Section 1.
Where a notary comes into play is that there are instances when an employer can’t physically meet with their employee. (I actually had an appointment last week where my contact found out from me that she was hired!) Notaries are hired by signing services and companies such as N3 Notary and Verify I-9 to serve as an “authorized representative” of the employer.
As an authorized representative of the employer, all you have to do is complete Section 2 of the I-9 form on the employer’s behalf. This is done by entering the information from forms of acceptable identification, typically a driver’s license and social security card are used.
Here’s how an I-9 appointment typically plays out for notaries:
- Receive phone call offering job.
- Accept job and confirm appointment. Print any documents required for appointment.
- Confirm availability of internet and laptop.
- Meet at public place usually between 9 – 5 pm EST or 12 – 9 pm EST.
- At appointment, log on to internet and make sure you have wi-fi.
- Pull up your email program and call the company that hired you or is confirming employment verification.
- Company will send you an email, open it and click on the link.
- Carefully examine the forms of identification.
- Enter ID information into Sections B and input your information in Section C.
- Confirm ID information with the employee.
- Submit info and make sure it’s received on the other end.
- Log out, thank your hiring company and contact and wish them good luck in their employment.
There’s one part of the review process with the hiring company where the interviewer reviews the process and asks what a receipt is when referring to identification. For some reason, I always want to say it’s a copy, but that is not the correct answer. The correct answer is that it is a temporary form of identification.
I-9 appointments can be a great way to supplement your income and add to the notarial services you offer.
There are a couple of things to watch out for though. One, is value your time wisely. The companies that offer these appointments typically don’t pay a very high fee. They’ll want you to do it for $20 if the employee comes to you. The rates I’ve tried to establish and find that work best for me is if I charge $30 for an employee coming to me and $60 (depending on location) for going to them.
My fee rationale is that yes, while these appointments, don’t take long, there may be travel involved. There’s also the use of technology, so make sure your equipment operates properly. Always bring the cord for your laptop even when you think it has enough power to last all day.
Another reason for my fee increase is that I’ve found these appointments aren’t always handled in a timely fashion. A mobile notary may have to spend time waiting to reach their contact with the hiring company. Once the contact is made, there are many times when you’re put on hold during the process.
All things being equal, I’d say an appointment could run as little as 5-10 minutes, but when scheduling them I’d give yourself 20-30 minutes to complete the assignment.
If you’re completing the assignment electronically as is typically the case, there’s no paperwork to print or copies that you have to provide to the employee. You’re also not required or allowed to take a picture of the IDs. The only requirement on the back-end is confirmation with the company that the assignment was completed successfully.
Now all you have to do is wait for your check and that usually doesn’t take very long. I can’t ever remember having to wait more than thirty (30) days to be paid. Also, I’ve found that the companies that offer this service are legit and trustworthy, at least to this point in my experience.
The following video is a little dated, but gives a good overview of completing the form:
If you’re a veteran notary, how did I do? Did I cover everything? Let me know if you have any questions. We greatly appreciate the comments we’ve received.