Notary Public Guide
As a public official, a notary public assumes a
position of trust which demands a high degree of conscientious public
This brochure is designed to answer some basic questions
if you are interested in being commissioned or are already serving
as a New York State Notary Public.
To learn more about the role of
a Notary Public, I suggest that you pick up a copy of the New York
State Division of Licensing Services publication entitled "Notary
Public License Law" which you may download from the New York
State website at: http://www.dos.state.ny.us/licensing/lawbooks/notary.pdf.
as an agent for New York State, my office processes the necessary
forms for a Notary Public after their appointment by the New York
Secretary of State. We also maintain records of all Nassau County
notaries, and authenticate notary signatures upon request.
emphasize enough the importance of performing your duties properly.
Be responsible and know the law.
General Notarial Information
The chief Notary Public
of every county is the County Clerk. By state law, every Clerk’s
Office must provide the service of a notary to its residents.
and customary notarial functions include:
- Administering oaths and affirmations
- Taking affidavits and depositions
- Receiving and certifying acknowledgments or proof of written instruments
such as deeds, mortgages, and powers of attorney
- Demanding acceptance or payment of foreign and inland bills of exchange, promissory
notes and obligations in writing, and protesting the same for non-payment
are commissioned in their county of residence. After receiving and
approving an application for a Notary Public commission, the New
York Secretary of State forwards the commission, the original oath
of office, and the signature of the notary to the County Clerk.
County Clerk’s Office maintains
a record of notary commissions and signatures. The public may access
these records to verify the notary’s official signature at
the County Clerk’s office.
Notary Public Fees
A notary public
may charge a fee of $2 for administering an oath or affirmation or
for taking an acknowledgment or proof of execution. Unless otherwise
authorized by law, a notarial fee may not exceed this amount.
accordance with New York State Law, the County Clerk’s Office
provides for the use of a notary free of charge.
the Nassau County Clerk will authenticate the signature of a notary
public on a document and attest to the notary’s
authority to sign. This is normally obtained when the documents will
be used outside of the State of New York.
Notaries who expect to
sign documents regularly in counties other than in their residence
may elect to file a certificate of official character with other
County Clerks in the State of New York to facilitate authentication
of their signature in counties other than Nassau.
Notary Public Application
Notaries Public are commissioned by
the New York Secretary of State for a term of four years. An applicant
for a Notary Public commission must submit an original application
along with the required fee to the Secretary of State Division of
Licensing Services. The application includes an oath of office which
must be sworn and notarized. The applicant must also submit a “pass
that he or she has taken and passed the notary examination.
admitted to practice in New York State as an attorney may be commissioned
as a notary without an examination.
A newly appointed
notary will receive an identification card that indicates his or
her name, address, county, and commission term.
For up-to-date information on the
Notary Public Examination, including fees, regulations, test sites
and times, please visit: http://www.dos.state.ny.us/licensing/notary/notary.html.
The renewal application is posted to
the Notary Public approximately three months prior to the expiration
of his or her term of office. The application must be completed and
submitted with a $60 fee to the County Clerk where the notary is
commissioned. Instructions for proper submission are included with
the renewal application. The term of the renewal commission is four
years. Subsequent notary renewals are also
recorded at the County Clerk’s Office.
Change of Name or Address
If your personal name or address
has changed, you may pick up a Change of Personal Name or Address
form from the County Clerk’s Office. Follow the instructions
on the form and submit it along with a $10 fee to the NYS Department
of State. (The fee is not required if the name change is the result
of change of marital status) You may also change your name upon renewal
of your Notary license, without an additional fee. You must provide
proof of your name change, e.g. a copy of one of the following: court
order changing your name; marriage certificate; driver's license,
or a non-driver's ID card; valid passport; or immigration documents.
You should use your new name when signing your renewal application.
A change in the business name requires re-application.
Attorneys residing outside of the State
of New York who are admitted to practice in the State of New York
and who maintain a law office within the State are deemed residents
of the county where their office is maintained.
than attorneys who have offices or places of business in the State
of New York may also become notaries. The oath of office and signature
of the notary must be filed in the office of the County Clerk of
the county in which the office or place of business is located.