What You Need to Know About Becoming a Notary Public

There are many reasons you may want to consider becoming a notary public, whether you work for a company that could benefit from having one on staff, you want to make some extra income or you want to help out your community. Here are some things you need to know about becoming a notary public.

You’ll Need Special Tools

If you’ve ever needed to utilize the service of a notary yourself, you’ll know that notarization involves stamping or embossing a seal on documents. As a notary public, you’ll probably need to purchase a notary seal embosser to use in your own work. The type of embosser or stamp you’ll need will be specified in your state’s regulations, so make sure to research the exact tools you’ll need to purchase. 

Regulations Vary By State

You will want to study your state’s regulations for notaries, as they can vary depending on where you live. Most states require you to be an adult, proficient in English and live in the state where you are applying. In some states, you may be required to complete an educational course and pass an exam.

You May Need A Notary Bond

To protect people receiving services from fraud or mistakes, many states require you as a notary public to purchase a notary bond of a specified amount. While the amounts vary and are set by state legislation, a notary bond is similar to insurance and protects all parties from any financial injury that could occur from improper notarizing.

You Can Help People With Your Services

Besides making a little extra income and adding to your resume, you may consider offering pro-bono or low-cost services to members of your community. Notary services are required for many different reasons, from passport documents to certified copies of documents like transcripts, but unfortunately, not everyone can afford notarization services. If you are financially able to, it could be helpful to reach out to your neighbors and offer you services to them.

You May Need to Take a Class or Test

While not required everywhere, many states will need you to take a class and possibly an exam before you can become a notary public. You can find online courses or an in-person class, depending on your needs, and should be able to learn everything you need to know about being a notary. Make sure that the course you choose is approved by your state and that it will prepare you for any exams you may need to take.

Becoming a notary public can be a great way to boost your skills and help your community. These are a few things you need to know before deciding to become a notary, but make sure to study your state regulations thoroughly.


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