Do Articles of Incorporation need to be notarized?


You’re probably aware that the formation of a company involves a legal process where incorporation gets finalized in a specific state. Once the incorporation process is complete, the investors and the owners of the new company get proper recognition by law.

And this is where articles of incorporation come into play.

What are Articles of Incorporation?

You may have heard about articles of incorporation as “incorporation certificates,” or “corporate charters”. In fact, you can look at the articles of incorporation document through the lens of a charter that lays the legal foundation of the company in a specific state.

Articles of incorporation roll out basic information about a newly incorporated company. The common practice is filing articles of incorporation with the Secretary of State office. In some instances, filing articles of incorporation makes more sense with a state agency that deals in business registration.

The articles of incorporation highlight the basic operational attributes of a company. Once investors and the owner file this document and get prompt approval, it recognizes their newly formed company as a legally registered entity in a particular state.

Typically, articles of incorporation include basic information, like company name, service agent, street address, registered name, type or volume of issued stock, etc. Owners and investors use the articles of incorporation to form their companies legally.

For the most part, investors and owners use articles of incorporation outside the firm. However, there are other legal documents, like operating agreements and business plans that tie together the internal operations. When the investors and the owners file articles of incorporation, it provides them with significant tax benefits. Mostly, it allows the investors and the owners to raise capital, ward off liability, and issue stock.

Who signs Articles of Incorporation?

The incorporator is responsible for signing formation document. Once directors are officially named in the document, they become incorporators and need to sign all fields within the articles of incorporation in front of a notary public.

For added convenience, the attorney who incorporates the company serves as the sole incorporator. However, this individual needs to resign as the company’s incorporator. Typically, states dictate that there should be the exact signature of the incorporator.

Remember, third-party providers see formation documents as one of the legal forms and have to be filled out and submitted through the corporation’s registered agent.

Do Articles of Incorporation have to be notarized?

If you’re wondering what documents need to be notarized, understand that certain legal documents need to go through a proper notarization process.  Now, if you plan to form a new establishment, you’ll need to get relevant documents, like articles of incorporation.

As soon as you submit articles of incorporation, your new business becomes a legal body in the eyes of the state. This usually propels the investors and the owners to notarize their articles of incorporation to avoid potential legal hurdles. Without notarization, articles of incorporation won’t get accepted.

Oftentimes, you may find documents related to a specific corporation’s purpose, and you need to highlight initial directors so that the notary public can take proactive action and review the document for verification and legal validation.

Why is it important to notarize Articles of Incorporation?

Whether it’s articles of incorporation or (almost) any other document, notarization makes sense. The fundamental aspect of notarization comes down to when the notary public witnesses the signature and confirms the identity of the involved parties.

During notarization, you may also learn about the expiry of notarized documents. Nonetheless, the screening process deters and detects potential fraud and safeguards the property and personal rights of the citizens. Notarization is also invaluable because it ensures the principal parties don’t become victims of exploiters.

How to notarize Articles of Incorporation?

First, you need to schedule a virtual or face-to-face meeting with a notary public.

Second, the investors and the owners need to virtually or in person with the notary public as per the scheduled time.

Third, involved parties need to provide updated and relevant forms of identification, like a driver’s license or passport to the public notary for identity verification.

Fourth, sign the articles of incorporation document in the presence of a public notary and make sure the notary adds his signature and seals the document. After that, you just need to take care of the notary’s filing fees.

Where to get Articles of Incorporation notarized?

Courthouses, county offices, banks, real estate agencies, law firms, shipping stores, retail stores, and libraries are the most standard spots to reach out to a notary public. On average, you may need to pay a minimum of $15 to notarize a document.

Depending on the state where you want to start a small business, the requirements and laws around articles of incorporation may vary. But in any case, you cannot notarize articles of incorporation documents on your own. Make sure to connect with a state-certified and licensed notary public to notarize the articles of incorporation form.

As per most state laws, you can now notarize different types of documents remotely, including articles of incorporation. The fact is that eNotarization or remote online notarization is thriving in many American states and many investors and owners often reach out to online notary agents to take care of the notarization faster. If you’re not sure whether or not your state allows remote notarization, reach out to an attorney to find out about the notarization laws.

Notarize Articles of Incorporation online with PandaDoc Notary

PandaDoc Notary is an online platform that supports, promotes, and allows remote online notarization across American states where it is legal.

Using PandaDoc Notary, you can notarize articles of incorporation more easily than having to deal with traditional in-person notarization which can take a lot of time.

On the PandaDoc Notary platform, users just need to schedule an appointment. After that, you’ll be assigned an online notary registered agent.

You can communicate all the details about the involved parties in the articles of incorporation. You can get the notarized document once you provide their relevant IDs. PandaDoc Notary platform also comes with integrated features, making remote notarization even more straightforward than ever.