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What are the Steps to Becoming a Notary Public?

Steps to Becoming a Notary Public

There are six easy steps to becoming a notary public.

  1. Register and complete an approved Notary Course.
    • The 6-hr course is for first-time Notaries, returning notaries who wish a better understating of the latest notary laws, and notaries whose Commission has lapsed.
    • The 3-hr course is for returning Notaries whose commission has not had a lapsed.
      • Note: The 3-hour course must be completed, notary application submitted, and pass the state exam prior to the current commission expiration date.
  2. Take the Notary State Exam proctored by the CPS
    • Applicants must submit:
      • a current valid photo identification
      • a notary application
      • a Proof of Completion Certificate for the required course of study
      • a 2x2 color Passport Photo
      • a check in the amount of $40 made payable to the Secretary of State
      • retakes $20
    • Test results are received 15 business days after testing
    • To pass a minimum score of 70 is required.
  3. Live Scan/fingerprinting for the background check
    • Complete background check as close to the exam date as possible
    • Commissions will not be approved without the background check
  4. It takes 4-12 weeks for the Secretary of State to commission notary applicants.
  5. Once the applicant is commissioned by the Secretary of State, he/she will receive by US mail:
    • a 9x12 manila envelope that containing:
      • the Notary Commission
      • two copies of the Oath of Office
      • information about obtaining a 15k Surety Bond, and the
      • Authorization to Manufacture a Notary Public Seal/Stamp.
  6. Upon receiving the Commission
    • Purchase:
      • the 15K Surety Bond
      • the stamp/seal, and
      • a journal, if applicable (returning notaries may continue using the old journal)
    • Notaries have 30-calendar days from the date listed on the Commission (no late submissions will be accepted) to:
      • go to county clerk/recorder office of the principal place of business as recorded on the Notary application
      • take both copies of the Oath of Office and
      • the 15k surety bond to the
      • at the county clerk/recorder’s office, the notary will take, subscribe, and file the Oath of Office and 15k Surety Bond.
      • Once completed notaries may begin to notarize signatures.

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