An Acknowledgment is a common notarial act. Its purpose is for a Notary to certify three things:
- That the signer personally appeared before the Notary on the date and in the county listed in the acknowledgment block at the time the notarization takes place*.
- That the signer was positively identified by the Notary (see Proper Identification for Notarizing Documents in Michigan).
- That the signer acknowledged to the Notary that they have the ability to sign in the capacity listed on the document and they are doing so of their own free will.
There are various Acknowledgement forms that can be executed, depending on the nature of the individual signing.
Acknowledgement for an individual signing on their own behalf
Acknowledgment for an individual signing on behalf of a corporation
Acknowledgment for an individual signing on behalf of a partnership
Acknowledgment for an individual signing as a public officer, trustee or personal representative
Additionally, alternate Acknowledgments are acceptable as long as it conforms to the laws and regulations in Michigan, it conforms to the place which the acknowledgment was taken and it contains the words “acknowledged before me” or similar words.
Each Acknowledgment must contain the following information type or printed:
- Notary Name (as commissioned)
- Notary Public, State of Michigan, County of (county notary is commission in)
- My commission expires (date of notary’s commission)
- And, if the notary is performing the notarization in a county other than their commissioned county, the phrase “Acting in the County of (county the notary is physically located in when notarizing the document)”
*With an Acknowledgment (unlike a Jurat) the individual signing the document does not necessarily need to appear before the notary at the time of signing the document. When the document is notarized, however, the individual must personally appear before the notary and acknowledge to the notary that they did in fact execute the document and it was done of their own free will. The notary can then notarize the document for the date the individual appeared before the notary, regardless of the date the original document was signed.
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