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Do I Need To Buy An Embosser To Go With My Notary Stamp?

New Hotline Resized 3I received my Notary stamp, but I did not receive a seal embosser. Is a seal embosser

required?J.S., Alabama

No, an embosser is not required in Alabama. You may use either an embosser or an inking stamp as an official seal. (COA 36-20-72.)

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

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Maria E. Angle

12 Nov 2019

Do I need to purchase an embosser to go with my Notary stamp??

National Notary Association

12 Nov 2019

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

Elain Vance

12 Nov 2019

Should I purchase an embosser to go with the stamp? I live in Ohio

National Notary Association

12 Nov 2019

Hello. Ohio permits its Notaries to use either an ink stamp or embosser. The seal must consist of the coat of arms of the state within a circle that is at least ¾ inches, but not larger than 1 inch and surrounded by the words “notary public,” “notary seal” or words to that effect, the name of the notary public and the words “State of Ohio.” The name of the notary public can be printed, typed or stamped near the signature. The commission number and commission dates are not required.

Ray DeSaro

25 Nov 2019

Do I need an emboser in the state of NJ?

National Notary Association

25 Nov 2019

Hello. New Jersey does not have a seal requirement for Notaries.

susan kaplan

25 Nov 2019

i don't think i need a embosser in New York State, please confirm. thanks.

National Notary Association

25 Nov 2019

Hello. New York does not require use of a Notary seal.

25 Nov 2019

Does Utah allow the embosser?

National Notary Association

25 Nov 2019

Hello. Under Utah Notary Law, “A notary may use an embossed seal impression that is not photographically reproducible in addition to, but not in place of, the photographically reproducible seal required in this section” (UCA 46-1-16[4]).

Ellen Smith

25 Nov 2019

I'm in Washington. I believe that the embosser is also optional here, but a lot of my clients have asked about it. If I get an embosser, just because my clients think it's cool, are there rules on it's use. For example, I have seen them used over document text. When those documents are copied doesn't the embossing show as black and obscure the print and thus make a copy obvious but also unreadable? If it is important not to obscure the print on a copy of the document, would I then not use it on any certification associated with the document to uphold continuity?

National Notary Association

25 Nov 2019

Hello. Washington Notaries have the option of using an embosser as their official seal. “The seal or stamp must be capable of being copied together with the record to which it is affixed or with which it is logically associated” (RCW 42.45.150[3]).

DeLores Minnis Johnson

08 Dec 2020

I live in Florida and notarize a lot if documents going out of the country a lot. I was thinking that an embosser along with my seal would make the documents look more professional. Should I invest in an embosser?

National Notary Association

10 Dec 2020

“An impression-type seal may be used in addition to the rubber stamp seal, but the rubber stamp seal shall be the official seal for use on a paper document, and the impression-type seal may not be substituted therefor” (FS 117.05[3][a]).

28 Jan 2021

I am located in Texas. Are we required to have an embosser?

National Notary Association

29 Jan 2021

Hello. Texas Notaries must use a seal that leaves a photographically reproducible impression: “The seal must be affixed by a seal press or stamp that embosses or prints a seal that legibly reproduces the required elements of the seal under photographic methods. An indelible ink pad must be used for affixing by a stamp the impression of a seal on an instrument to authenticate the notary public’s official act” (GC 406.013[c]).

08 Apr 2021

Hello, new Notary, I am in Kentucky. Do I need both or any for that matter?

National Notary Association

08 Apr 2021

Hello. Kentucky does not require its Notaries to use a seal.


12 May 2021

I’m a notary in NC, if I use an embosser do I have to also use an ink stamp?

National Notary Association

14 May 2021

Hello. NC Notaries may use either an ink seal or embosser (GS 10B-37[c]).


04 Jun 2021

Is a embosser needed in Virginia?

National Notary Association

07 Jun 2021

Virginia statute does not stipulate a specific kind of seal for use on paper documents, so either an inked stamp or an embossing seal is acceptable. Statute does, however, require the following: “Near the notary’s official signature on the notarial certificate of a paper document, the notary shall affix a sharp, legible, permanent, and photographically reproducible image of the official seal, or, to an electronic document, the notary shall attach an official electronic seal” (COV 47.1-16[C]). If an embosser is used, the required photographically reproducible image may be achieved by “simply darkening the seal embossment with ink so it will meet the standard of being ‘photographically reproducible’” (joint statement by the Secretary of the Commonwealth and the National Notary Association, June 13, 2007).


24 Jun 2021

What about Pennsylvania

National Notary Association

01 Jul 2021

Hello. In Pennsylvania, “A notary public shall provide and keep an official seal, which shall be used to authenticate all the acts, instruments and attestations of the notary public. The seal must be a rubber stamp…” (57 Pa.C.S. 317[1]). “A notary public may use an embossed or crimped image in the performance of a notarial act, but only in conjunction with the use of an official stamp” (4 Pa. Code 167.23[a]).


14 Jul 2021

Do I need to purchase an embosser to go with my Notary stamp? I live in Massachusetts.

National Notary Association

14 Jul 2021

Hello. Massachusetts Notaries may use either a black-inked stamp or an embosser (GL 222, Sec. 8[b]).


21 Jul 2021

I live in Harford County Maryland do I need to have the stamp and embossed? My stamp has my name and and the emboss has a different name. Would the expiration be the same as my oath date?

National Notary Association

23 Jul 2021

Hello. Maryland Notaries may use either an inked stamp or an embosser, but if using an embosser the embossment must be photocopiable. Maryland law states that a Notary must “affix” or “emboss” an official stamp on a tangible record (ACM St. Gov’t 18-215[b][1]). “The official stamp of a notary public shall… be capable of being copied together with the record to which it is affixed or attached or with which it is logically associated” (ACM St. Gov’t 18-217[a][2]). The seal must include: Name of Notary; Office of Notary; County of residence, or if a nonresident, county in which the Notary was qualified; Commission expiration date of Notary*; Any other information required by the Secretary of State. * Statute gives the Notary an option to include the commission expiration date in the seal or include it on a certificate of notarial act completed and signed by the Notary (ACM St. Gov’t 18-217[b]).


12 Sep 2021

Hi I live in Bergen County, New Jersey and was wondering if I need to purchase both stamp and embosser to notarize documents. If so, do I use them along side each other? Or do I stamp one place and use the embosser on another? Please help. Also do all documents require an embosser?

National Notary Association

17 Sep 2021

Hello. A New Jersey Notary is not required by law to use a seal of office.


08 Oct 2021

Hope all is well ! Can I use both the seal embosser with my stamp together. I am from new York. Thank you.

National Notary Association

08 Oct 2021

Hello. The following is from the state's Notary License Law publication: “The laws of the State of New York do not require the use of seals by notaries public. If a seal is used, it should sufficiently identify the notary public, his authority and jurisdiction. It is the opinion of the Department of State that the only inscription required is the name of the notary and the words ‘Notary Public for the State of New York’” (NPLL).

Amanda P.

03 Dec 2021

Do I need an embosser in addition to the notary stamp, for use in Georgia?

National Notary Association

09 Dec 2021

Hello. No: “The embossment of notarial certificates by the notary’s seal shall be authorized but not necessary, and the use of a rubber or other type stamp shall be sufficient for imprinting the notary’s seal. A scrawl shall not be a sufficient notary seal. An official act must be documented by the notary’s seal” (OCGA 45-17-6[a][1]).

Barbara mcnure

06 Jan 2022

Do I need an ink stamp and embossier to notarize all my documents?

National Notary Association

10 Jan 2022

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


24 Jan 2022

Do I need a stamp and embossed for Michigan ?

National Notary Association

25 Jan 2022

While Michigan Notaries are not required by law to use a seal of office, they may affix a seal to fulfill the requirement to “print, type, stamp, or otherwise imprint mechanically or electronically sufficiently clear and legible to be read by the secretary (of state) and in a manner capable of photographic reproduction” certain information. This information must be affixed “immediately near the notary public’s signature, as is practical” (MCL 55.287[2]). “A notary public may use a stamp, seal, or electronic process that contains all of the information required by MCL 55.287(2). However, the stamp, seal, or electronic process shall not be used in a manner that renders anything illegible on the record being notarized” (MCL 55.287[3]).

16 Jan 2023

Can I use both an embosser and stamp in Arizona on a document? I just want extra validation when notarizing. I understand it’s the stamp OR embosser. Please advise. Can I use both on one document in Arizona?

National Notary Association

24 Jan 2023

Hello. In Arizona, “A notary public may possess an embosser in addition to the notary public’s physical stamping device. A notary public may use an embosser only in conjunction with the notary public’s physical stamping device. An embosser or an impression made by the embosser is not an official seal of office for the purposes of the laws of this state” (ARS 41-267.C).

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