Your Cookies are Disabled! sets cookies on your computer to help improve performance and provide a more engaging user experience. By using this site, you accept the terms of our cookie policy. Learn more.

Quiz: Can Notaries do this?

Updated 10-9-23.


1. A signer explains that she is organizing a fundraiser for a local school. She asks if you can endorse the event so she can advertise it as “100 percent Notary approved.” Can you do this?

ANSWER: No. Notaries are not authorized to use their commissions, title of “Notary Public” or Notary seals to endorse events or products.

2. A friend of yours has been elected as a local official. He is required to take an oath of office and asks if you can administer one to him even though there’s no document for him to sign. Can you do this?

ANSWER: Yes. A Notary is authorized to administer a verbal oath or affirmation to an individual, even if there is no written signature or document involved.

3.  Your neighbor says he needs an urgent notarization. “I have to submit this letter for a court case. Can you put your seal on it? I just want to make sure the letter is legally binding.” Can you do this?

ANSWER: No. Sometimes customers mistakenly believe that a Notary’s seal will automatically make a document legally binding in a court of law. This is not the case — a Notary simply verifies the identity of the signer, takes the signer’s acknowledgment of a signature, or witnesses the signing of documents. Simply affixing a Notary seal to a document without performing an authorized notarization or completing a notarial certificate is not allowed.

4. A co-worker comes to you with a question. “I received this document in Spanish from one of our international clients. You speak Spanish — would you translate the document and then certify that your translation is accurate?” Can you do this?

ANSWER: No. Notaries are not authorized to certify translations. While a Notary could notarize another translator’s signature on a declaration stating that the document was translated correctly, in this case it would not be possible because you may not notarize your own signature.

5. A customer comes to your office. “I need this document notarized, but there is no Notary wording printed on it,” she says. “Can you tell me which type of notarization it needs? You’re the Notary, you should know.” Can you do this?

ANSWER: No. If a customer doesn’t know what type of notarization is needed, you may describe the different types of notarizations (such as acknowledgments or jurats) and let the signer pick what notarization they want. However, you should never choose the type of notarization on the signer's behalf. Doing so would be the unauthorized practice of law unless you are a qualified attorney.

David Thun is the Assistant Managing Editor at the National Notary Association.

Related Articles:

3 things you can’t do as a Notary

Additional Resources:

Notary Essentials

View All: Quizzes


Add your comment

James J. Smyth

19 Nov 2019

no comment

Theda C Barrett

04 Nov 2020



05 Jun 2021

Helpful! Thanks

John McElhenny

04 Oct 2021

like doing this keeps you on your toes about what you can and cannot do

Elizabeth Williams

04 Oct 2021

I love the question because it keeps me learning what notaries need to know.

Lisa Marie Cunningham

04 Oct 2021

Quiz, every helpful.

Sheri L Walker

17 Oct 2021

This never gets old or too repetitive because when dealing with friends or family or general public you feel pressure to oblige and that will get you in trouble. Thanks NNA

09 Nov 2021

Very helpful, very informative.


09 Nov 2021

Good to know

Genette McGowan

09 Nov 2021

These quizzes are helpful reminders. Keep them coming!

Vincent Pena

09 Nov 2021

Good quick refresher!


09 Nov 2021

Thank you for helping us preform our duties according to our state requirements.

Sheila Lawson

09 Nov 2021

Thank you for providing the quizzes.

Cristina Mendez

13 Nov 2021

Great refresher quiz!

Jane Lynn Gannaway

17 Nov 2021

very educational

Kundee J Geegbae

10 May 2022

Thanks for the information


10 May 2022

This is very helpful. Thanks!!!

Olivette Fliker

13 May 2022

Very helpful information. Thanks

Consuela L Reese

23 May 2022

Very Helpful

Jeryle Murphy

23 Oct 2023

Thank you it is great to confirm this.

Maria I Raygoza

23 Oct 2023

Knowledgeable reminder, very helpful, Thank you.

Michael L Lett

23 Oct 2023

Can we get more questions, maybe one's that are more of a challenge?

H. Chico Flores

23 Oct 2023

I am under the impression that My Notary is to verify that the person signed the document in my presence and provided sufficient proof of identity.


23 Oct 2023

There is a problem with question 4. It does not say I also need to notarize it, which means I CAN do it, even if I am a notary as long as I am not notarizing it. You are going to confuse new notaries. Smh.

Joan Walker

23 Oct 2023

The quiz was helpful.

Margaret E Hillhouse

23 Oct 2023

@Artur about questions 4, I think you're confused. It clearly states that you cannot notarize your own signature.

Pam White

24 Oct 2023

I love these quizzes! Thanks for always keeping us up to date on the latest!


24 Oct 2023

Need more quizzes! This was great!

gerald birk

27 Oct 2023

quizzes are great, keeps one "frosty"!! thank you, keep 'em comming!

Leave a Comment

Required *

All comments are reviewed and if approved, will display.