What You Need to Know About Becoming a Notary

The first things you need to know about becoming a notary is what a notary is and what they do. A notary, or notary public is a public servant (officer) that has to take an oath just like any other public servant/official (even the president) in order to serve their community. A Notary public serves as state certified legal witnesses for the signing of legal documents like deeds, power of attorney forms, business documents, marriage and divorce papers and other legal documents in their state of certification. Each state has guidelines you must follow in order to become a notary public, but the process is similar in every state. As a notary, you can charge for your services and/or work in a couple of different areas in the field that can be quite lucrative like notary signing agent. The following information is an overview of what is required to qualify to be a notary.

Go to your state’s website to find out what the requirements are for becoming a notary. Please note that you must be free from criminal convictions to serve in this field.

Take the online certified notary public course and exam. Some states require that you show up in person to take the test while others will allow you to take it online. There are also notary websites that offer nationwide testing and certification online that you can check to see if they offer this course for your state. Some of these sites also offer other opportunities for notaries.

You will have to be fingerprinted, submit to a background check and possibly a credit check (depending on the state). These are things that you must pay to have done to submit to the state.

Once you ave accepted as a commissioned state notary public, you will receive your state seal stamp and information on your duties. Keep in mind that in order to keep your commission current you have to pay a fee when it ends.Those are the basic requirements for becoming a notary. The costs include the application fees (where they apply), course, certification exam, bonding (required) and omissions insurance which is required in most states. Omissions insurance is there to protect you and the general public against fraud or claims of fraud on your part. You will also need to invest in a notary journal which records the acts you witness. The journal is filled out by you and signed by the other party or parties. You can get more detailed information on becoming a notary online. This will help you decide if this is something you might want to do for your community.

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