Notary Bulletin

Hotline Tip: How Do I Properly Destroy An Expired Seal?

I’ve been told that I should destroy my expired Notary seal. Any tips on how to do so? Also, once my Notary journal is full, am I required to mail it to the State of California? – M.B., San Diego, CA

When your current commission expires, you should destroy your Notary seal. We recommend taking a razor blade and defacing the rubber plate so no one can use the expired seal. You can also use a hammer to destroy the seal, as long as it renders the seal unable to make an impression. If you have an embosser, you should separate the plates, and take a hammer and screwdriver and deface the plates so no one can use the embosser.

If a Notary resigns, is disqualified, is removed from office, or allows his or her commission to expire without obtaining another commission within 30 days, then his or her notarial records (journal) must be delivered to the county clerk’s office where the Notary’s oath of office and bond are on file within 30 days of commission resignation, revocation or expiration.

If none of the conditions above apply, then the Notary should keep all journals — including filled ones — under his or her direct supervision and control.

Hotline answers are based on the laws in the state where the question originated and may not reflect the laws of other states. If in doubt, always refer to your own state statutes. — The Editors

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained NNA Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call (888) 876-0827, Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

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Quiz: The Many Types Of Notarial Acts

Notaries perform many different duties for the public — and it’s easy to lose track of the different acts and what states they’re authorized in. Test your familiarity with common — and uncommon — notarial acts.

(A link to the correct answers is provided at the end of the quiz.)

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions.

(888) 876-0827

Monday through Friday:
5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST

Saturdays: 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

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