Under new provisions governing all documents requiring notary acknowledgements (often referred to as “Certificates of Acknowledgement”) in the State of California, the following additional language must be set forth in a box on all forms utilizing a notary’s acknowledgement. Within the context of construction form documents, this requirement specifically applies to Mechanic’s Lien and Design Professional Lien Releases, as well as Releases of Stop Notices.

A notary public or other officer completing this certificate verifies only the identity of the individual who signed the document to which this certificate is attached, and not the truthfulness, accuracy, or validity of that document.

Your notary should be aware of this new provision, which became effective January 1, 2015. This new provision is intended to clarify that the notary’s role is only to affirm the identity of the individual signing the document. Care should be taken to avoid using old forms on hand containing notary acknowledgements that do not contain this language.