Upper East Side Notary Runs Successful Business Out of His Car — Literally
A notary working in Manhattan parks his car outside the Pakistani and Indian consulates and offers copying, notarizing and translation services. One of the consulates even advertises his services with a signing in their waiting room, “Notary Copies Green Car 64th Street and Madison Avenue.”
New York Post–
By MATTHEW ABRAHAMS and BOB FREDERICKS
Last Updated: 6:00 AM, April 29, 2013
Posted: 1:54 AM, April 29, 2013
An entrepreneur-on-wheels runs a notary-public business out of his car, parking it on the Upper East Side and catering to people doing business at the nearby Indian and Pakistani consulates.
Shahid Pervez, 57, drives his battered green 1997 Geo Prizm two hours from his home in Fairfield, Conn., to the corner of Madison Avenue and East 64th Street a couple times a week and stations it on the side of the road.
He hangs three signs that read “NOTARY PUBLIC” and “COPY” from his windows, plugs a laptop and copy machine in the cigarette lighter and gets to work.
“I used to come to consulates to help people, and there I found mostly illiterate people or people in a rush,” said Pervez, who worked as a paralegal in New Jersey and is fluent in five languages.
About three years ago, he realized he could turn his part-time job into a full-time career.
“People come at random looking for facilities such as e-mails, verification of documents, translations, power of attorney, wills,” he said.
“I figure if I’m here helping people complete the task in one visit without [them] having to take an additional day off or anything like that, they will get the job done immediately on spot and get to go home.”
Pervez parks his car, which has more than 300,000 miles on it, at around 9 a.m. Before long, customers are lining up.
Mohammad Aziz, 40, was applying for a visa to go home to Pakistan for vacation.
“There’s no photocopy machine in this area, so I’m lucky to find this guy here,” he said.
The consulate even advertises Pervez’s services, posting a notice in a waiting room that reads, “Notary Copies Green Car 64th Street and Madison Avenue.”
When a brain aneurysm in September prevented Pervez from working for six months, a nearby breakfast-cart operator picked up some of his duties.
“People kept asking where they could get photocopies,’’ recalled Tony Amir, 31, of Bed-Stuy, who now charges 35 cents to use a copier he keeps behind his bagels. “He wasn’t here for months, so I figured I’d start doing it.”
Pervez charges $1 for copies and $2 to $100 to notarize forms.
Translation jobs are especially lucrative, says Pervez, who is fluent in English, Hindi, Arabic, Persian and Urdu and speaks some French, Italian and Spanish.
Some days he makes only $40 and others upward of $500, averaging about $50,000 a year.
While his customers are happy, the city may have a beef.
“A general vendor license is required to sell goods or services in a public space, but such vending is never allowed from a parked vehicle,” said a spokeswoman for the Department of Consumer Affairs.
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