2023 Florida Statutes< Back to Statute Search
Title XL REAL AND PERSONAL PROPERTY
Chapter 695 RECORD OF CONVEYANCES OF REAL ESTATE
SECTION 03Acknowledgment and proof; validation of certain acknowledgments; legalization or authentication before foreign officials.
695.03 Acknowledgment and proof; validation of certain acknowledgments; legalization or authentication before foreign officials.—To entitle any instrument concerning real property to be recorded, the execution must be acknowledged by the party executing it, proved by a subscribing witness to it, or legalized or authenticated in one of the following forms:
(1) WITHIN THIS STATE.—An acknowledgment or a proof may be taken, administered, or made within this state by or before a judge, clerk, or deputy clerk of any court; a United States commissioner or magistrate; or any notary public or civil-law notary of this state, and the certificate of acknowledgment or proof must be under the seal of the court or officer, as the case may be.
(2) OUTSIDE THIS STATE BUT WITHIN THE UNITED STATES.—An acknowledgment or a proof taken, administered, or made outside of this state but within the United States may be taken, administered, or made by or before a civil-law notary of this state or a commissioner of deeds appointed by the Governor of this state; a judge or clerk of any court of the United States or of any state, territory, or district; by or before a United States commissioner or magistrate; or by or before any notary public, justice of the peace, master in chancery, or registrar or recorder of deeds of any state, territory, or district having a seal, and the certificate of acknowledgment or proof must be under the seal of the court or officer, as the case may be. If the acknowledgment or proof is taken, administered, or made by or before a notary public who does not affix a seal, it is sufficient for the notary public to type, print, or write by hand on the instrument, “I am a Notary Public of the State of (state) , and my commission expires on (date) .”
(3) OUTSIDE OF THE UNITED STATES OR WITHIN FOREIGN COUNTRIES.—An acknowledgment, an affidavit, an oath, a legalization, an authentication, or a proof taken, administered, or made outside the United States or in a foreign country may be taken, administered, or made by or before a commissioner of deeds appointed by the Governor of this state to act in such country; before a notary public of such foreign country or a civil-law notary of this state or of such foreign country who has an official seal; before an ambassador, envoy extraordinary, minister plenipotentiary, minister, commissioner, charge d’affaires, consul general, consul, vice consul, consular agent, or other diplomatic or consular officer of the United States appointed to reside in such country; or before a military or naval officer authorized by 10 U.S.C. s. 1044a to perform the duties of notary public, and the certificate of acknowledgment, legalization, authentication, or proof must be under the seal of the officer. A certificate legalizing or authenticating the signature of a person executing an instrument concerning real property and to which a civil-law notary or notary public of that country has affixed her or his official seal is sufficient as an acknowledgment. For the purposes of this section, the term “civil-law notary” means a civil-law notary as defined in chapter 118 or an official of a foreign country who has an official seal and who is authorized to make legal or lawful the execution of any document in that jurisdiction, in which jurisdiction the affixing of her or his official seal is deemed proof of the execution of the document or deed in full compliance with the laws of that jurisdiction.
(4) COMPLIANCE AND VALIDATION.—The affixing of the official seal or the electronic equivalent thereof under s. 117.021 or other applicable law, including part II of chapter 117, conclusively establishes that the acknowledgment or proof was taken, administered, or made in full compliance with the laws of this state or, as applicable, the laws of the other state, or of the foreign country governing notarial acts. All affidavits, oaths, acknowledgments, legalizations, authentications, or proofs taken, administered, or made in any manner as set forth in subsections (1), (2), and (3) are validated and upon recording may not be denied to have provided constructive notice based on any alleged failure to have strictly complied with this section, as currently or previously in effect, or the laws governing notarization of instruments. This subsection does not preclude a challenge to the validity or enforceability of an instrument or electronic record based upon fraud, forgery, impersonation, duress, incapacity, undue influence, minority, illegality, unconscionability, or any other basis not related to the notarial act or constructive notice provided by recording.
History.—RS 1973; ch. 5404, 1905; GS 2481; ss. 1, 2, ch. 7849, 1919; RGS 3823; CGL 5699; s. 7, ch. 22858, 1945; s. 1, ch. 28225, 1953; s. 1, ch. 69-79; s. 1, ch. 71-53; s. 26, ch. 73-334; s. 3, ch. 80-173; s. 1, ch. 84-97; s. 763, ch. 97-102; s. 21, ch. 98-246; s. 23, ch. 2019-71.