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How to Become a Notary Public in Arizona

To become an Arizona Notary, you must complete the following steps:

  1. Make sure you meert the state's eligibility requirements (see below)
  2. Get your $5,000 surety bond.
  3. Submit your signed Notary Application, notarized Notary Bond form and filing fee. The Secretary of State's office requires originals, not copies.
  4. When you recieve your commission certificate, check your name, county of residence and commission dates to ensure your stamp is made accurately.
  5. Buy your Notary seal, journal and fee schedule.
  6. Consider getting Errors and Omissions insurance (optional, but strongly receommended).
  7. Consider taking Notary training for more guidance.

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Arizona Notary Process | Requirements to be a Notary in Arizona | General Notary Public Information

Arizona Notary Process Questions

How much does it cost to become a Notary in AZ?

There is a $43 fee to apply for a Notary Public commission in Arizona. Additional costs for bonds, Notary tools and education courses vary depending on vendors. There may be county fees for filing your bond, signature and commission.

The cost of commissioning can differ depending on whether you are a new or renewing Notary. Supply package prices vary among vendors. New Notaries may need more “how-to” assistance than experienced Notaries. Books, training and live expert assistance are often must-haves for most new Notaries.

How long does it take to become an AZ Notary?

The Arizona Department of State recommends allowing three to four weeks for the processing of a Notary Public commission application. The Secretary of State's office reserves the right to request additional documentation or fees required for processing, which can make the overall process take more time.

Expedited service of one to two business days costs an additional $25. Any application requiring further review, e.g. felony conviction, professional license action or past Notary complaint, cannot be expedited.

How long does an Arizona Notary commission last?

An Arizona Notary commission lasts four (4) years.

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Requirements to be a Notary in Arizona

Who can become an AZ Notary?

A Notary Public applicant in Arizona must meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Be able to read and write English
  • Must be a citizen or legal permanent resident of the United States
  • Be a legal resident of Arizona for income tax purposes, claiming a residence in the state as his or her primary residence on state and federal tax returns
  • May not be convicted of a felony unless a pardon has restored his or her civil and political rights

Is training required for AZ Notary applicants?

Arizona does not require training prior to getting a Notary commission. The state offers a Notary Public Reference Manual on their website for guidance.

Do I need to take an Arizona Notary exam?

There is no state-proctored exam required to become a Notary Public in Arizona.

What is a surety bond and why do I need one?

Arizona Notaries are required to purchase a $5,000 surety bond from an authorized company to protect signers against financial damages resulting from the Notary’s negligence or misconduct. A surety bond is a financial guarantee that the Notary will fulfill his or her obligations to notarize in compliance with state laws. This Notary bond specifically protects the public, not the Notary. Any damages paid from the bond go to cover any signer’s losses and must be paid back to the surety company by you, the Notary.

Notaries can insure themselves against possible legal costs or damages by purchasing a separate, optional errors and omissions (E&O) insurance policy. Though not required by law, an E&O policy covers a Notary’s legal fees and damages up to the amount of the policy.

What Notary supplies are requiredin Arizona?

Arizona Notaries must use a rubber stamp ink seal for all notarial acts. Stamps should not bleed during or after use, as this can cause county to reject documents due to smudging. An embosser may be used as a secondary impression but cannot serve as the Notary’s only seal.

You must also post your fee schedule in a specific format and in a conspicuous location.

Though no longer required by law, every Arizona Notary should consider keeping a permanently bound journal of his or her notarial acts containing numbered pages. When purchasing a journal, there are features to which you must pay close attention. A journal with tamper-proof sewn construction allows Notaries to identify missing pages in their notarial records, which becomes extremely helpful if you’re ever named in a lawsuit. Simple notebooks or glue-bound journals are not acceptable in Arizona.

Depending on the types and quantity of notarizations being performed, different tools of the trade may be recommended. For example, if you are a mobile or retail Notary, a guide for checking identification documents is recommended because you are constantly dealing with different people, as opposed to someone who notarizes in the same setting for the same group of people day after day.

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General Notary Public Information

Which state government office handles Notaries?

The Arizona Office of the Secretary of State, Notary Section, located in Phoenix, Arizona, holds all records of Notaries Public, and records are available to be viewed by the general public.

May I become a Arizona Notary if I am not a U.S. citizen?

Yes. You do not have to be a U.S. citizen to become an Arizona Notary Public. You must, however, be a legal resident of the state and meet all other application requirements.

Where will I be able to notarize?

An Arizona Notary can perform notarial acts anywhere within the state’s borders.

Who can I notarize for?

Any member of the public, as long as the request meets all statutory requirements for notarization.

What do I need to know about remote notarization in Arizona?

On July 1, 2020, remote notarization is allowed in Arizona. The NNA will update this information when the Secretary of State publishes rules governing remote notarization. In the meantime, we've published an article describing what remote notarization is and you need to know.

What is the process to renew my commission as a Arizona Notary?

The process to renew an Arizona Notary Public commission is the same as the new Notary application process. You must continue to meet the qualifications listed above. Also, you cannot start the process until 60 days before your current commission expires.

If you're not quite ready to get started, we have additional resources where you can learn what a Notary is, what they do and why you should become a commissioned Notary.

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