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Hotline Tip: How Long Should I Keep My Old Notary Journal?

NNA Hotline Tips For NotariesHow long is a Notary required to keep his or her old Notary journals? – L.H., South Dakota

South Dakota does not require Notaries to maintain a journal, though it is a practice recommended by the South Dakota Secretary of State. The retention period is not addressed since it is not a requirement; therefore, it is up to the discretion of the Notary how long to keep the journal.

In the absence of a law or a rule, the NNA recommends following The Notary Public Code of Professional Responsibility and keeping his or her official journal of notarial acts in his or her possession for at least 10 years from the date of the last entry in the journal (VIII-C-2) as it can provide very important documentation in the event of a future lawsuit.


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) 876-0827Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

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Leslie Logan

23 Jul 2018

I had a Missouri Notary notarize and sign a temporary guardianship paper but it was copied or transfered on to a coguardianship papers when it got to Illinois from Missouri. What should I do?

National Notary Association

24 Jul 2018

Hi Leslie. Any questions about preparing or processing a legal document would need to be answered by a qualified attorney.

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