What should I do?

Sorry this is long, I appreciate your input.

I had a refi yesterday at 2. At 1 I was notified the docs weren’t ready and it would be rescheduled. I notified the signer, who was irate. She said that was unacceptable and she was leaving town the next day. She called lender and title and they agreed to get it done that day. I was notified docs were ready at 6. I called her to say let’s sign at 8. She asked me if we could do it early the next morning! I said no, the docs are dated today. Turns out she wanted to go to a movie night at her church. I agreed to meet her at the church only because it was the same distance for me. We ended up signing in the lobby of her church at a sofa and coffee table. I’ve never seen anyone rush through a signing like she did. She said it was embarrassing to sit there signing documents. I tried to slow things down, and I did take time to look over the docs before we left. This morning I noticed that on the Signature Affidavit and AKA Statement she printed her name beside her typed name at the top. Where it says Sample Signature she printed her name. Further down the page where she had to attest that the previous names were all one and the same person, she wrote in cursive. Most of the signatures on all the docs are just scribbles and the dates almost not readable.

My question–should I let the title officer (who sent me a note yesterday after she talked to the angry signer saying she hoped the signer hadn’t been too hard on me) know how much of a hurry this gal was in and that I noticed the AKA statement had one signature printed instead of signed?

Thanks for your input.


Hmmm… so, she’s in hurry to go to the movies at her church :unamused: and on top she felt “embarrassed” for having to do the signing at her church’s lobby :roll_eyes:
I would explain the whole scenario to your contracting party and explain to the lady (if you were to do everything again) if she doesn’t have a special time for the signing where she can accommodate you with a chair and table, I, personally, wouldn’t do it. I got myself to a similar situation, and I told the company if I have to go back, I just pass.

I would most definitely include a note to title/hiring party explaining what happened here - you said you checked the docs. Honestly, under NORMAL circumstances you should have caught it then but I can understand the oversight in light of this woman’s push to get done - she’d have been irate again if you told her she had to re-do this form.

CYA (cover it) and let title know, although it sounds like they already know about her. Be clear you’ll be happy to go out and correct, but for a fee. They may contact her and get her to correct it at the out-of-town location - she can get the doc herself and go to any UPS store to get it notarized - then she can pay the shipping herself…

Good luck - let us know how this turns out


Okay, I get where you’re coming from, but I think you may be wrong on this one and here’s why?

The signing are set on a date and time which are convenient for the signer and only the signer. In this case, that was to be on the day in question at 2:00 pm. For whatever reason that didn’t happen ( No Fault of the Signer No Fault of the Signing Agent ). The problem is the signer feels she’s wasted her time adjusting her planned schedule for a signing that at this point isn’t going to take place.

At 6:00 pm the signing agent is made aware the documents are now ready. The signing agent then calls and suggest the signing to take place at 8:00 pm ( which would be convenient for the signing agent ) however this time was not convenient for the signer because she had previous plans to go to a movie at her church. The signer knew this would be inconvenient for her so she suggested the signing to wait until the morning of the following day. This wasn’t an option, given the documents were date sensitive. Although she agreed to allow the signing agent to come to the lobby of her church for the signing, it does not change the fact that-

  1. The signing wasn’t done at a time she wanted.
  2. The signing wasn’t done at the location she desired.
  3. She didn’t feel she had the type of privacy needed to feel comfortable doing a signing.
  4. Was being taken away from why she came to the church (to watch a movie with her friends and parishioners)
  5. She felt the need to just rush through signing and dating the documents because of all of the above previous mentioned factors. As a result of the signer need to rush, there may have been some errors in properly signing documents.

Let’s not be to hard on the signers, but I would share the details of the signing event which the signing agency. IJS :upside_down_face:


Great Reply David - but to address the above - do we know why it was rescheduled/delayed to begin with? Perhaps the delay was on the signer (delay in employment verification, change in financial status, change in loan app information - remember, OP said "should I let the title officer (who sent me a note yesterday after she talked to the angry signer saying she hoped the signer hadn’t been too hard on me) " so sounds like this signer has been a problem from the jump.


You’re absolutely right Linda,

Let me clarify by saying we know that signers don’t always display or have angelic like behavior; and they can be the primary reason for delays in some cases. We ( the notary signing agents ) are the professionals, an as such have to always try to be flexible and as accommodating as reasonably possible.

Thanks Linda :grinning:

Thanks for the replies. I really appreciate them.
The signing was delayed because of the lender not having the docs ready. When I notified the signer about this and I say she was irate, I mean cuss-me-out mad. She said she’d already been through hell with this lender and she was going out of town the next day and the signing had to be that day. Period! After yelling at me, she apparently called her lender and the title company and was finally told the signing would happen that day. The lender actually told her the docs would be to the title company by 5. So, when I called her at 6 to suggest an 8 pm signing, she should have been very happy. But no, she asked me if we could sign early next morning (before she flies out of town) because she wanted to go to the event at her church. That’s when I told her the docs would have to be redone if she wanted to sign the next day. She then suggested meeting me at her church. She first wanted to sign in a car (dark by 8 pm remember) but I told her the 160 pages of docs would be better handled at a table. That’s when she suggested the foyer at her church. I personally felt her attitude was very demanding the entire time I dealt with her. Like I said earlier, after she talked to the title company that day, the title agent actually reached out to me to say she hoped this woman hadn’t been too ugly to me.
I certainly understand we want to sign where and when the signer is comfortable, but if this woman had to have the docs signed that day so badly, she could have been a little grateful it was finally going to happen.


I see your point @TheTreasureCoastNota, meanwhile the signing agent gets caught in the middle. I’ve been at signers where they were waiting for me to put all their anger in me because they’ve been given different dates by the escrow or TC; and since I am the only face that they had seen, I have to calm them down explaining that “I’m just the messenger, please don’t shoot me” :sweat_smile: and they get nicer after that.
Agreed with you @LindaH-FL some signers are also the problem, and some don’t cooperate. I have also noticed that signers haven’t been told that they need only to spend between 30 minutes to an hour with me… “love” when they’re been told “is going to be quick, only a couple of signs and done”, meanwhile I have with me around 150 pages, plus a good amount of notarizations. And forget about when signer wants to read and been explained every document :persevere: and they want to call their loan officer. I’ve been at signings where I have spent 1 and 1/2 hours or even more.


I had a situation similar to yours, it was between her car and mine, the night came upon us and then started to rain.
The ironic of the situation is that it was in front of her house, and she has a deck, but she was afraid of Covid19. To top it off , she wasn’t expecting to sign the amount of documents because she was told “only a few signs and fast”… she never stopped asking when to receive her funds :roll_eyes:

My input on “when borrowers start to complain about the signing. I nicely let them know, I am sorry for what has happened. I do let them know “ I am an independent contracted notary who was hired to;
“Facilitate and make sure loan docs are signed and dated correctly. I must collect IDs in order to acknowledge their signatures on the documents and record it on my notary book. I am not an employee or work for Title co or Lender who initiated their loan. I do apologize for the miscommunication.”
That works most of time and borrowers calm down after that.


Thanks, Lilly. When I come across that (I’m sure that I will), that will be my posture! Plus prayer in secret.

Yes! That’s the first thing I tell signers, “I just got notified to come to you for this signing, I’m independent from them”… they just calm down and sometimes feel sorry for out pouring their anger in me :sweat_smile:

An update–I spoke to the title agent this morning and explained the situation. She was very chill about it all and said she would just send the docs on to the lender and see what happens. :slightly_smiling_face:


First, at the time I was notified by the client/borrower to sign in a different location, I will contact title co, to inform about the change.

I would advise the borrower about how long signing will be, if the client doesn’t agree and prefer to stay at the church event, I will inform title co of the cancellation and reschedule.
The borrower should be aware that a church or a public place is not the right place to sign legal documents.
We can’t be rush at a signing process, because any mistake will be a defect for the signing agent. And we all know that.
We need time, and then review everything before leaving the closing location.
It is a benefit to the borrower doing the closing and is their responsibility to cooperate with us, if for any reason they can’t at the time set, they should call the lender and reschedule for another day.

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I read your story and comments and I have to say YOU DID THE BEST YOU COULD! And you were professional and friendly towards a hostile signer who was angry at things that were completely out of your control. Bravo! I hope you also noted your journal to reflect the situation, signing location, attitude, etc.

As for the worry about the errors in signatures. Let the chips fall where they may, is my advice. You gave proper instructions to the borrower regarding signatures required. Whatever mark the signer makes constitutes her “signature”. And if the lender or title company decide to reject them, that is the fault of the signer. WE cannot judge a signer’s AKA signature. We only instruct them per our instructions.

Dealing with stressed out and frustrated signers is the unpleasant aspect of being a notary signing agent. And we all just do the best we can. I think you handled it brilliantly. Kindness and diplomacy will help carry us through those difficult signings. Cheers!


Thank you, Carmen, for your kind words and encouragement. I appreciate them very much!!


A lot of text that doesn’t explain why you did not check the pages as they were handed back to you. That is your job, isn’t it?

Signing at a church, on a porch, off the tailgate of a pickup, it’s all the same- do your job by checking the pages as they are handed back to you. You messed up, simple as that.

Foundation Notary

Don’t lose control of the table…i was taught
U have an irate signer …i tell them we can reschedule … call ur lender
Im only the notary.
.i do let everyone know we need about an hour depending on the package…when i confirm
Good luck

Yes, you should tell the title officer immediately.

I would also tell them about the rude client and let them know it’s not worth your time. Anyone that insult you and then expects service must be out of their mind.

I would let the EO know and offer to re-sign the doc. he Lender may not care since her signature is on the page somewhere! Good luck, bless you for all of that hassle to get her signed! ;))