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Who do I notify when my Notary commission expires?

My commission will expire soon, and I will not be renewing. Do I need to notify anyone with the state or local government offices?G.T., Pennsylvania

Yes, you are required to surrender your Notary journals to the office of the recorder of deeds in the county where you last maintained an office.  This must be done within 30 days of the expiration of your commission.

Additionally, you are required to destroy or deface your Notary seal.

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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17 Aug 2020

Can the stamps also be returned with the journals?

National Notary Association

18 Aug 2020

Hello Jane. Rules for disposing of old Notary seals depend on your state's laws. What state are you commissioned in, please?

Lucille "Lucie" Lucio

13 May 2021

My commission has expired on 04/27/21 and I am not renewing my commission. How do I surrender notarial act journals since the Los Angeles Registrar's / County Clerk Offices are closed due to COVID19?

National Notary Association

08 Jun 2021

Hello. You can surrender your journal to the Los Angeles County Recorder’s office by mail. When doing so, please make sure to send it via certified mail with return receipt. The address for the recorder’s office and other requirements can be found at:

Mical Wargo

29 Jun 2021

What about if my notary commission expired last year in NY. Can I still renew it? Thank you, Micla

National Notary Association

03 Aug 2021

You would have to reapply to become a Notary. A renewal request must be sent about 3 months prior to the expiration of a Notary commission.

June Hunter

01 Nov 2021

Do I need to surrender my journal and stamp even if I plan to recommission 3 months before the expiration date in Georgia?

National Notary Association

04 Nov 2021

Hello. Georgia does not require Notaries to keep a journal, so state law does not provide guidelines for surrendering a journal to the state. “A notary public whose commission expires and who does not apply for renewal of such commission or whose application for renewal of a commission is denied shall destroy the official notary seal” (OCGA 45-17-18). Revocation or resignation of a commission also requires the Notary to destroy the seal (OCGA 45-17-16 and 45-17-17).

Yvonne Rodriguez

07 Dec 2021

My Notary Commission expired a few years ago, and I would like to renew it, but where could I get my old Commission number to renew it since I don't have it.

National Notary Association

09 Dec 2021

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

Dustin Koyamatsu

09 Dec 2021

I got my notary commission before covid I don't know when my notary commission expires. I was deployed in the army for a majority of the time that my notary commission was active. Is there a place I can talk to or get a hold of to find out when my notary commission expires and is there anyone I can speak to about how to turn in my notary commission?

National Notary Association

10 Dec 2021

Hello. Yes, you should speak to your state's Notary regulating office. If you can tell us what state you are commissioned in we can provide you with the appropriate contact information.

Dustin Koyamatsu

10 Dec 2021

I'm in California more specifically Southern California and San Bernardino county this is in regards to my previous question where in I stated that I don't know when my notary commission ends and I would like to find out how or who I can speak to to find out when that happens. I was told to message back with my state and county so that I can be given the contact information that I need to get the information regarding my commission.

National Notary Association

17 Dec 2021

Hello. You can contact the California Secretary of State's Notary Public Section at 1-916-653-3595 to request assistance. If you obtained your commission through the NNA, you may also contact our Customer Care team at

Gloria Britt

12 Dec 2021

I am trying to update my Notary, starting 2022


12 Dec 2021

My commission expires on 01/08/22. I plan to renew a couple of day after it expires. Do I still need to send my journal back? I appreciate your help

National Notary Association

17 Dec 2021

Based on what you’ve described, we think it would be best if you contacted our Hotline team by phone and provided them with a more detailed description of the situation. The NNA Hotline: 1-888-876-0827 Mon – Fri: 5:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. (PT) Saturday: 5:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PT) If you’re not an NNA Member or Hotline Subscriber, they will provide you with a one-time courtesy call.

Arslan Chaudhry

17 Dec 2021

My notary expired today and I want to renew. Can I still renew it even though I am now late? I am in New York City.

National Notary Association

28 Dec 2021

Hello. Yes, but you will not be able to notarize until you receive your new commission.

Denise Levere

26 Jan 2022

I am trying to find out if my notary license are still active, Can you please help.

National Notary Association

28 Jan 2022

Hello. If you obtained your commission through the NNA, please email our Customer Care team at and they should be able to assist you.

Michelle Mercer

16 May 2022

My Notary expired today in Fayetteville NC. Where do I need to turn my stamp in at.

National Notary Association

18 May 2022

Hello. In North Carolina, a Notary who resigns the commission must notify the Secretary of the date of resignation by fax, email or certified mail, return receipt requested. “Notaries who cease to reside in or maintain a regular place of work or business in this State, or who become permanently unable to perform their notarial duties, shall resign their commissions…” Within 45 days of resignation, Notaries must deliver their seal to the Secretary by certified mail, return receipt requested” (GS 10B-54 and GS 10B-55[a]).

Kathleen Fagan

06 Jul 2022

My notary expired in 2011 - how can I renew or do I have to start over from the beginning?

National Notary Association

08 Jul 2022

Hello. You will need to apply for a new commission. You can start the process by visiting our site at


27 Jul 2022

Hello, in the state of North Carolina. I never surrendered my journal or seal. It’s been years since expired. What can I do? Please help

National Notary Association

28 Jul 2022

Hello. North Carolina Notaries are not required to turn in their journals. From the North Carolina Notary Public Guidebook: “The Department recommends that notaries maintain their notary journals for a minimum of 10 years after the expiration of their final commission. However, notaries may determine to keep possession of their notary journals for a much longer period of time based on the business practices of their specific industry.” Regarding your expired seal, we would suggest contacting the Secretary of State's Notary Public Section at 1-919-807-2219 to request instructions.


28 Jul 2022

Hi my commission expired 07–2 7–22. I have no intention to renew my commission and I need to figure out what to do with my journals for Washington state. Can you please advise? The only thing I see is I have been able to find Is to hold onto them for 10 years and then destroy them. I would prefer to send them somewhere instead of hold onto them since I’m no longer going to be a notary.

National Notary Association

28 Jul 2022

Hello. In Washington state, “The notary public shall retain the journal for ten years after the performance of the last notarial act chronicled in the journal. The journal is to be destroyed as required by the director in rule upon completion of the ten-year period” (RCW 42.45.180[1]). “A notary public’s journal … shall not be surrendered to an employer upon demand or termination, whether the employer paid for the journal or the notary’s bond or application fees” (WAC 308-30-200[3]).


09 Aug 2022

My notary expired 7/22/22. I’m in San Bernardino county. Can I mail my journal to them or do I have to take it in?

National Notary Association

10 Aug 2022

Hello. GC 8209 does not specify whether the journal must be delivered in person or by mail. We would recommend contacting the county clerk's office to confirm if they will accept a mailed journal. “(a) If any notary public resigns, is disqualified, removed from office, or allows his or her appointment to expire without obtaining reappointment within 30 days, all notarial records and papers shall be delivered within 30 days to the clerk of the county in which the notary public’s current official oath of office is on file. If the notary public willfully fails or refuses to deliver all notarial records and papers to the county clerk within 30 days, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be personally liable for damages to any person injured by that action or inaction." (GC 8209)

Sheilagh Johnson

30 Aug 2022

I was a notary many years ago in Minnesota. How do I locate my previous commission number? Do I need the previous number if it was a span of 5 or more years? I'd like to go through he process to help out at a new job.

National Notary Association

30 Aug 2022

Hello. If you are looking for your old commission number, you can contact the Minnesota Secretary of State at 1-651-296-2803. If you need assistance applying for a new Minnesota Notary commission, you can contact our Customer Care team at and they will be happy to assist you.

Tammra Ficarelli

12 Oct 2022

Hi. My commission ended October 8, 2022. Sadly I never made a single entry in my books. Do I need to send a blank, brand new book in to the State? California.

National Notary Association

13 Oct 2022

Hello. If you did not perform any notarizations during your commission period, there is no need to send your blank journal to the County Clerk's office.

Cher Armstrong

21 Oct 2022

I will be expiring come April and have no intention of renewing- I live in Suffolk County, New York. do I need to surrender my journals or retain them in a secure place? I know I definitely need to destroy the stamp

National Notary Association

21 Oct 2022

Hello. New York does not require Notaries to keep a journal for traditional pen-and-paper notarizations, but there is an emergency order in place for remote notarizations effective through Jan. 30, 2023 that requires journal entries for remote notarizations. If you have recorded any journal entries for temporary remote notarizations under the emergency guidelines effective through Jan. 30, 2023, “The journal required by this subdivision shall be maintained by each notary public for as long as such notary public remains in office and then for an additional five years thereafter” (Executive Law Section 135-c.2[h][2][i], effective through January 30, 2023). If you have voluntarily kept a journal for traditional pen-and-paper notarizations and there are no other state guidelines for retention and disposal of journals, the Notary Code of Professional Responsibility recommends the Notary shall safeguard and maintain sole control of each journal for at least 10 years from the date of the last entry in the journal.

Virginia C

02 Nov 2022

My commission expired less than 6 months ago in PA. Can I still renew it or do I need to reapply?

National Notary Association

09 Nov 2022

Hello. Thank you for reaching out. One of our Customer Care Representatives will be contacting you shortly to provide you with more information.


27 Nov 2022

I will not be renewing my notary when it expires I am in pa what what do I do?

National Notary Association

30 Nov 2022

Hello. “Resigning notaries public, as well as those whose commissions have expired or been revoked, pursuant to 57 Pa.C.S. § 319(e), must deliver their journal to the office of the recorder of deeds in the county where the notary public last maintained an office within 30 days of: “(1) expiration of the commission of the notary public, unless the notary public applies for a commission within that time period; “(2) resignation of the commission of the notary public.” (PA DOS website, “Update Information”).


04 Jan 2023

My commission expires Jan. 7, 2023. I have a new job with no time off. How do I return my log books if I can’t do it in person? I live In Pennsylvania and the commission is in Butler county

National Notary Association

10 Jan 2023

Hello. You should contact the county office of the commissioner of deeds and ask if they will accept other options for delivery of your journals.

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