Acknowledgement is a legal term that refers to a declaration that affirms a person acted on their own free will. In the real estate lending industry, acknowledgement is often required for a deed and other papers. Many times, a notary public is also needed to witness the signing of any documents, and the finished certificate is stamped, signed and dated. Because deeds are usually recorded, acknowledgement is an essential component as it gives legal validity to a transaction. For example, when you are in the process of purchasing a home or getting on a loan from the bank, your signature is required as an acknowledgement that your actions were voluntarily given. An acknowledgement is also a term that is given to any certificate or document that is issued to record a deed of trust or other type of legal contract.