Saturday, June 6, 2009

Breach of Contract Non Payment of Notary Fees

Facts:A representative of an extremely wealthy homeowners association in Fairfax County contracted with me to notarize their member homeowners on documents to be filed in Fairfax County.The rezoning may create a thousands of dollars of profit when the wealth homeowner sell their homes!!!!! The agreement was $5 notary act and $25 travel. I completed 27 notary acts. I also agreed to be there between3pm-7pm In many of these cases I had to check 2 people's government id since they were signing as joint owners.I told the representative my bill was $160. This fee is consistent with guideline of the VA notary handbook She presented me with a check substantial lower and I have decided to not process the check.
Discussion:This has not happened to me personally in the past. Notary signing agents regularly complain that they are not being paid by mortgage companies. Clearly, there is a situation that needs to remedied. Unfortunately, the remedies are limited. Exhaustion of Administrative remedies is limited to contacting the attorney or registered agent of the corporate wealthy homeowners association The agreement of representative of the wealthy homeowners association can easily be imputed to the wealthy homeowner association. Fairfax County will be disinterest in the dispute. The only other remedy will be the Fairfax General District Court since a wealthy corporate homeowners association may not be sued in Small Claims Court. Limited discovery is allowed in General District Court. Notary signing agents may want to explore this link
The Commonwealth of Virginia will not get involved with notaries collecting fees. In the future each person should pay the individual notary fees since I can no longer trust very wealthy home owner associations to pay my fees nor should any other notaries working in zip code 22151. You can collect you travel fee on arrival from the entity that requested your services.
Conclusion: While I do have written communication via emails, I think a more formal contract for multi-notarizations is a good idea. However, a better idea is to collect the notary fees from each signer. Legislation needs to be passed to make it a crime to assault, threaten or defraud a notary. Notaries are public official who need to be protected from the occasional errant adult juvenile delinquent!!!!! Clearly this very wealthy homeowners association needs to be given a major legal message.