A notary public is a public officer constituted by law of California to serve the public in matters usually concerned with estates, deeds, powers-of-attorney, and foreign and international business.

The main functions of a notary is to administer oaths and affirmations, take affidavits and statutory declarations, witness and authenticate the execution of documents, take acknowledgments of deeds and other conveyances. Any such act is known as a notarization.

A notarial service is different from the practice of law, and giving legal advice and preparing legal instruments is forbidden to notaries such as those appointed in California.

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