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How To Become A Notary Public In New Mexico

If you are interested in becoming a Notary Public in New Mexico, this practical guide will answer many common questions. Learn about notarial duties, and find out how you can become a commissioned Notary. Once you are ready to begin the process of becoming a New Mexico notary or renewing your New Mexico commission, we'll walk you through step by step.

New Mexico Notary Process | Requirements to be a Notary in NM | General Notary Public Information

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New Mexico Notary Process

What is the process to become a Notary Public?

  1. Make sure you meet all qualifications under New Mexico state law (see below).
  2. Buy your state-required bond and seal. The company that issues the bond must also provide a power of attorney with the name of the company official who signed the surety bond.
  3. Complete an application form.
  4. Submit your application, surety bond, power of attorney and $20 application fee to the Secretary of State.
  5. Consider getting errors and omissions insurance (optional, but strongly recommended).
  6. If you determine you need additional training, seek out continuing education or consult Notary experts for guidance.

How long does a New Mexico Notary commission last?

The New Mexico commission is valid for four years, after which it has to be renewed to continue as a Notary.

How long does it take to become a Notary?

Once the application and supporting documents are submitted, it can take two to 10 weeks for the state to issue the commission.

How much does it cost?

A $20 application fee applies. All documents submitted by mail must be paid by check or money order, payable to the Secretary of State. The cost of the bond, seal and other supplies will vary based upon the vendor chosen.

Is training or an exam required to become a Notary?

No exam or training is required, but the New Mexico Secretary of State does offer a Notary Public basics video. You can also download a copy of the New Mexico Notary Public Handbook for free.

What kind of supplies will I need?

You must use a rubber stamp or an embosser in New Mexico. The seal must include the applicant’s name, the words “Notary Public – State of New Mexico,” and “My commission expires ______.” You will need to purchase your stamp or embosser before applying to become a Notary or renew your commission, as the seal impression is required on the application.

When shopping for seals, quality and durability can vary greatly among vendors. Ask if the seals carry a lifetime guarantee. In particular, stamps should not bleed during or after use, as this can cause county officials to reject documents due to smudging. If you choose to purchase an embosser, you will also need to purchase an embosser inker to satisfy the requirement that the impression is able to be photocopied.

A second seal can help you avoid downtime if your seal is ever misplaced.

Keeping a journal is not required in New Mexico, but is recommended by the state. A journal can protect you if a notarization performed is ever questioned, and should be kept in a safe, locked area.

Do I need a bond or insurance?

A $10,000 surety bond is required before you apply to become a Notary Public in New Mexico. A bond protects the public financially from the possibility of a negligent mistake or intentional misconduct by the Notary. Errors & Omissions (E&O) insurance is optional. This insurance helps protect the Notary — if you make an unintentional mistake or a false claim is filed against you, an E&O policy will cover your legal fees and awarded damages up to the coverage you select.

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Requirements to be a Notary in New Mexico

Who can become a Notary?

To qualify to become a Notary in New Mexico, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a resident of New Mexico;
  • Be at least eighteen (18) years of age;
  • Be able to read and write the English language;
  • Not have plead guilty or nolo contender to a felony or been convicted of a felony;
  • Not have had a Notary Public commission revoked during the past five years.

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General Notary Public Information

Which state government office handles Notaries?

The Secretary of State is responsible for commissioning Notaries Public in New Mexico.

What should I do if I move or change my name?

You must inform the Secretary of the State of any name or address changes within 10 days of such change.

To change your name, you will need to fill out a name change application. You must provide a rider from the company that issued your surety bond with the new name, as well as an impression of the seal with your new name. A $3.00 fee applies.

Complete the address change form to update your information and mail or fax it to the Secretary of State. No fee applies.

Once my current commission expires, will I be automatically reappointed?

No, you must meet the requirements and reapply for a new commission.

Where will I be able to notarize?

A New Mexico Notary can perform notarial acts anywhere within the state’s borders.

Who can I notarize for?

You can notarize for any member of the public who makes a reasonable request and meets all requirements for notarization such as personally appearing before you and providing satisfactory proof of identity. You cannot notarize your own signature or perform a notarization if you have a conflict of interest. The state recommends that you avoid notarizing for family members as your impartiality may be questioned.

What is the process to renew my Notary Public commission?

If you need to renew your commission, you will need to purchase a new $10,000 surety bond and submit a new application. The New Mexico Secretary of State will send a postcard reminder approximately 30 days before the commission expiration.

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If you're not quite ready yet, 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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Get everything you need with a full New Mexico Notary Supply Package.