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May I Offer Notary Services Outside Of Work?

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I work as a Notary for a nursing home, but I would  like to offer notarial services outside of work. Am I allowed to perform outside of business hours? — A.N., Pennsylvania

Yes. You are allowed to notarize documents after working hours. Even if your employer paid the costs of your Notary commission, the commission belongs to you, not your employer.

There are a number of opportunities to become a mobile Notary or Notary Signing Agent. The Notary Bulletin includes several articles on building your Notary business that you may find helpful.

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 1-888-876-0827, Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST.

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16 Comments

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vicki Beaty

04 Apr 2016

Can l renew my notery on line its has expired

National Notary Association

04 Apr 2016

Hello Vicki. If you can tell us what state you are commissioned in, we can provide you with more information. Alternately, our Customer Care team can assist you with renewing your commission if you contact them at 1-800-876-6827.

Cyn

06 Apr 2016

However, if your employer specifically asked you not to perform notarial acts after hours, we are still not allowed - correct? Or does my employer not really have the right, even though they paid for my fees.

National Notary Association

06 Apr 2016

Hello. While many states may allow an employer to dictate when an employee-Notary may perform notarizations while on the job, a Notary may perform a notarization for any member of the public on their own time — including lunch breaks.Please see this article for more information: https://www.nationalnotary.org/notary-bulletin/blog/2014/08/notarizing-on-the-job-boss

SHANNON PERRY

24 Apr 2023

IF WE NOTARIZE ON THE WEEKEND OR LUNCH DO WE HAVE TO HAVE OUR OWN BOND INSURANCE ?

National Notary Association

24 Apr 2023

Hello. To help us answer your question, can you please tell us what state you are commissioned in?

Shannon

24 Apr 2023

Montana

National Notary Association

28 Apr 2023

Thank you. Please be aware that a surety bond and E&O insurance are two different things. Montana Notaries must carry a $25,000 surety bond from an authorized provider. This bond is used to pay any damages to a signer resulting from an improper notarization, and must be paid back by the Notary. E&O insurance is a separate policy that provides coverage for a Notary in the event the Notary is sued regarding a notarization. An E&O policy is separate from the surety bond. If you already hold an existing E&O policy, you would need to contact the insurance provider to ask if your coverage applies to notarizations outside of your regular job.

Kelsey

26 Apr 2023

I am a notary in New York. If my employer paid for my commission, stamp and journal, am I allowed to notarize outside of work?

National Notary Association

28 Apr 2023

Hello. There are no New York Notary laws restricting you from using your Notary commission outside of your job.

Andrea

09 May 2023

Greetings, I am located in TN. If my employer paid for my commission, stamp and journal, am I allowed to notarize outside of work? And, if allowed, what kind of insurance am I required to carry?

National Notary Association

22 May 2023

Hello. There are no restrictions in Tennessee regarding notarizing outside of your workplace. All TN Notaries are required to obtain a $10,000 surety bond. It is up to you if you wish to also purchase a Notary errors and omissions insurance policy to protect yourself against liability. You can find more information about E&O here: https://www.nationalnotary.org/support/faq/insurance

Christie

06 Jul 2023

Hi! I’m in AZ and just became official. I used my employer’s address as my working address. Can I notarize on the weekend off property? Does that affect anything if I start doing RON and mobile after hours as well?

National Notary Association

25 Jul 2023

Hello. In Arizona, “A notary public is a public officer commissioned by this state and all of the following apply without regard to whether the notary public’s employer or any other person has paid the fees and costs for the commissioning of the notary public, including costs for a stamping device or journal: “1. A notary public’s stamping device, commission and any journal that contains only public record entries remain the property of the notary public. “2. A notary public may perform notarial acts outside the workplace of the notary’s employer except during those times normally designated as the notary public’s hours of duty for that employer. All fees received by a notary public for notarial services provided while not on duty remain the property of the notary public. 3. An employer of a notary public may not limit the notary public’s services to customers or other persons designated by the employer” (ARS 41-269.G).

Parker

29 Aug 2023

Can I use my employer paid notary outside of work? I’m in Texas… also what happens to my notary if I no longer work for that employer?

National Notary Association

02 Oct 2023

Yes, you can notarize outside of work hours on your own. If you quit, you commission goes with you because it belongs to you regardless of who paid for it.

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