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Important Facts About Military Notaries

Military Salute

Notaries — both military and civilian — play a key role assisting members of the armed forces and their families by notarizing essential documents that preserve their rights — often free of charge.

Military bases often employ two types of Notaries: military personnel authorized as Notaries by the federal government, and civilian employees specifically commissioned by individual states for military work.

Notaries working on military bases handle a wide variety of documents for service personnel, including wills, powers of attorney and affidavits for troops deployed to other countries. They also regularly notarize documents for retired armed forces personnel, families of service members and Department of Defense employees. Most military legal assistance offices offer Notary services, free of charge, to military members, family members, civilian employees, retirees, and others eligible for legal assistance.

Just like their civilian counterparts, military Notaries can only notarize documents when the signer is physically present, according to the U.S. Armed Forces Legal Assistance Web site. Title 10, United States Code, Section 1044a requires all states to accept the notarial acts of military Notaries in the same way as state-commissioned Notaries.

The U.S. Armed Forces Legal Assistance Web site provides extensive information on military Notaries, their duties and federal statutes governing their work.

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38 Comments

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John Axt

12 Nov 2014

be aware that not all states allow for notaries to notarize on military bases or Indian lands. Texas seems to have a restriction against these two places.

Jennifer

23 Mar 2018

Do military notaries have commission identification numbers? I've received a document that I required to be notarized, however, cannot find a military notary database to verify the notary; AND the notary signer did not provide a commission id number.

Joel Lomasney

09 May 2018

Jennifer, No, military notaries do not have commission identification numbers nor are they listed in any sort of database. The authority for military Officers and other personnel to perform notary services is nested in federal and military law, and their signature of said military official is "prima facie" evidence that the notarization is legal. Proof of designation as a military notary (legal officers, executive officers, etc) is held at the individual unit level, which is not accessible to the public. I would advise against rejecting this notarization because of the issue you mentioned above, as it is counter to the spirit, letter, and intent of military notary laws.

Kristi

08 Jun 2018

Are Notary Seals a thing of the past for Military Notaries?

Johnathan Kline

16 May 2019

Does the law office notorize University documents? Can they offer an affidavit for single status to get married abroad? Can they off a criminal background check or give advice about where do get it living abroad for job purposes? Can the legal office provide paper work for children born abroad?

National Notary Association

17 May 2019

Hello. We're sorry, but we don't have information about specific legal services provided by this agency. Your best course would be to contact them directly to ask these questions.

Gregory Avente

02 Oct 2019

When military notaries PCS, do they bring their state issued stamp/seal with then? I was in Kansas but had a seal marked from Virginia.

National Notary Association

04 Oct 2019

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

Monique shatkey

23 May 2020

My son is deployed in poland. His fiance is military as well stationed in Texas. They have filed proxy. He needs a notary but they are in lockdown. How can he go about doing this as it is time sensitive

National Notary Association

27 May 2020

Hello. If your son needs to locate a Notary in Poland and is in the military, one possibility would be to find out if there is a U.S. military Notary available at the location he is stationed at. Such Notaries normally work through military legal assistance offiices. Another option would be to contact a U.S. embassy or consulate near his location, as consular officers are typically authorized to notarize documents.

Beneria Loveless

11 Sep 2020

Hello, I am a retired military veteran who is also the spouse of an active duty military member stationed abroad. My permanent home of record is Florida. If I were to obtain a Florida notary commission would I be allowed to utilize it in my current location?

National Notary Association

11 Sep 2020

Hello. No, a Florida Notary commission can only be used within the borders of Florida.

Beneria Loveless

11 Sep 2020

Hello, I am a retired military veteran who is also the spouse of an active duty military member stationed abroad. My permanent home of record is Florida. If I were to obtain a Florida notary commission would I be allowed to utilize it in my current location?

National Notary Association

14 Sep 2020

Hello. No, only within the borders of Florida.

keli

25 Jan 2021

If I got a state commission for notary signing, via NSA blueprint, I'm currently pursuing a course content now, would I be able to do military notary signings in my area if I am registered with state of florida automatically, or is there another set of courses or classes or extra learning I would need to be a state authorized military notary as a civilian?

National Notary Association

26 Jan 2021

Hello. As stated in the article, military Notary commissions are normally issued only to military personnel. Military Notary commissions are normally issued by the federal government. A Florida Notary Public commission is not the same as a federally-issued military Notary commission.

Latisha M. Speaks

04 Feb 2021

I am a Notary Public as well as an active duty US Air Force member. I would like the opportunity to serve as a notary public for military members world wide and would like to know how can I initiate such a request. I am commissioned out of the state of North Dakota and what prompts this question is the fact that I will be deploying this year and want to be able to assist my brother's and sisters down range. According to ND state Law: 44-06.1-12. Notarial act under federal authority. 1. A notarial act performed under federal law has the same effect under the law of this state as if performed by a notarial officer of this state, if the act performed under federal law is performed by: a. A judge, clerk, or deputy clerk of a court; b. An individual in military service or performing duties under the authority of military service who is authorized to perform notarial acts under federal law. How do I go about requesting authorization to perform notarial acts under federal law? I appreciate your response. My email is tladynotary@gmail.com if you have any information to send me. Thank you in advance and sorry if this has been asked, Latisha

National Notary Association

05 Feb 2021

Hello. As an active duty service member, you may wish to speak to your superior officer or someone at the JAG office where you are stationed to ask if you can apply for a military Notary commission.

Karen tufano

28 Apr 2021

My father is retired military in a nursing home. He needs to change his withholding on his dfas and needs a medical statement. Is there a specific form to fill out?

National Notary Association

29 Apr 2021

Hello. We're sorry, but that is a legal question that would need to be answered by a qualified attorney.

Chris S.

29 Sep 2021

I am a Warrant Officer in the National Guard. Per Title 10 USC section 1044a does that mean that I could act as a notary for a civilian individual to certify a signature on a document? For example, If a person in the neighborhood needed a notary to certify their signature on a document for a car title I would just need to verify their ID and then sign my Name/Rank?

National Notary Association

06 Oct 2021

Hello. Section 10 U.S. Code § 1044a - Authority to act as notary, specifically states that those in the armed forces that have the general powers of a Notary Public for: (1) Members of any of the uniformed services. (2) Other persons eligible for legal assistance under the provisions of section 1044 of this title or regulations of the Department of Defense. (3) Persons serving with, employed by, or accompanying the armed forces outside the United States and outside the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands. (4) Other persons subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice (chapter 47 of this title) outside the United States. If you believe that a person such as you described in your example meet these criteria, you would have to follow-up with a JAG or Commanding Officer to ensure they meet the requirements.

Hunter

08 Nov 2021

If my spouse needs to get a document notarized during boot camp, is this possible?

National Notary Association

08 Nov 2021

Hello. Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

Tymesha Bland

14 Nov 2021

I want to be a notary, but I am a resident of MI. We are currently based in NM. Any advice?

National Notary Association

17 Nov 2021

Hello. Only residents of New Mexico are eligible to apply for a New Mexico Notary commission.

Kara

08 Jan 2022

As a military spouse who’s home state is KS but is stationed and living in CA, do I need to obtain a CA id to prove residency? Are there certain exceptions for military?

National Notary Association

22 Mar 2022

In order to qualify as a CA Notary, you must have a physical residence address listed as your application. This will satisfy the requirement of being a California resident. In order to be designated as a Military Base Notary, you can be appointed only on the recommendation of the base commanding officer for the base where they would need you to act.

Kathy

18 Jan 2022

I would like to become one. How can I start the process?

National Notary Association

20 Jan 2022

Hello. As stated above in the article, in order to qualify for a military Notary commission you must either be military personnel authorized as a Notary by the federal government or a civilian employee specifically commissioned by an individual state for military work.

Bill

25 Jan 2022

Hi I'm retired military and my wife and I are both residents of Hawaii. If I print a military power of attorney from the internet, does it have to be notarized by a military notary? Thank you

National Notary Association

26 Jan 2022

Hello. We're sorry, but that's a legal question that would need to be answered by a qualified attorney or a military legal assistance office.

Linda Kay Chandler

07 Apr 2022

I am a notary public, notary signing agent, mobile notary for the state of Mississippi. How do I apply to work on a military base as a notary public? Thank you

National Notary Association

22 Apr 2022

Each branch of the United States Military typically appoints come commissioned officers to act with Notarial authority. You would have to contact a military base to see if they allow civilian Notaries to act on that particular base and what the registration procedure is (if any).

Jay zhan

17 Aug 2022

I just recently had a post nuptial agreement notarized on base and the notary did not look at my identification, only my wife’s! Does this invalidate it? I thought that was one of the main purposes; to confirm identity of the signers..

National Notary Association

25 Aug 2022

Hello. We're sorry, but any questions about if a Notary error invalidated a specific legal document would need to be answered by a qualified attorney.

Rhashied Patterson

10 Nov 2022

Do I have to present a state ID if I get a wet lock form notarized on a military base

National Notary Association

28 Nov 2022

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

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