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Surety Bonds and E&O Insurance: Know The Difference

In business, legal disputes are a fact of life — and Notaries are often named in lawsuits when problems are found on a notarized document. In our increasingly litigious society it’s crucial for Notaries to know the difference between a surety bond — which protects signers — and E&O policies that guard a Notary’s personal and professional assets from liability.

Some people mistakenly assume that state-required surety bonds cover Notaries against financial loss in a lawsuit. But surety bonds only protect signers from loss caused by a Notary’s error, not the Notary. For protection against liability, Notaries must take out an Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance policy. Unlike surety bonds, E&O insurance does not have to be reimbursed in the case of a claim pay-out.

Though best practices are an important safeguard against getting sued, Notaries can sometimes become entangled in lawsuits through no fault of their own — such as when their name is forged by someone else on a document or a seal image is copied and misused without the Notary’s knowledge. An E&O policy keeps the Notary covered in these situations and can also help pay for legal expenses such as hiring an attorney.

For more information on obtaining an E&O policy, you can also call (800) US NOTARY (876-6827) or visit us online.

View All: Best Practices


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16 Apr 2020

I'm looking to become a notary for our company. Would I have to go through you guys or can I just do it straight through Texas Secretary Of State? How much does an E&O Insurance policy cost in Texas?

National Notary Association

17 Apr 2020

Hello. You can apply through the NNA or directly via the Secretary of State's office, whichever you prefer. If you would like to apply through the NNA, please see here: The cost of an E&O policy depends on the amount and type of coverage you wish to purchase. Please see here for more E&O information:

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