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What color ink should Notaries use to sign documents?

I know the seal must be in black ink, but what color of ink is required for handwritten signatures when notarizing an Illinois Document?W.P., Illinois

There is no requirement that the Notary’s signature must be in a particular color. In July 2013, a law that required a Notary Public to only sign in black ink was repealed.

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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LOIS B Moore

03 Feb 2021

Very helpful information

Karen J Schettler

08 Feb 2021

Sometimes, a attorney will provide a cover letter, requiring "blue" ink. I have encountered this twice this year.

Trish M.

08 Feb 2021

I sign everything in purple. It serves as a bit of an authenticator....if anyone ever has a document with my signature in any color but purple, it is not real!


08 Feb 2021

I usually try to sign in blue so I can easily identify an original vs. a copy.

Miguel Hipolito

08 Feb 2021

So far to date, I have not encountered any signing where it required "black ink". To this day every assignment was been done in BLUE.

payal shah

08 Feb 2021

I am using Blue pen.


08 Feb 2021

Texas "prefers" signatures be in blue ink. This is to more easily detect fraudulent documents. Makes sense to me, and it makes reviewing/proofing the docs easier because I look for the blue sigs/dates on each page.


08 Feb 2021

I sign and request that everyone signs their signature in Blue Ink. It makes it easier to tell the original from the copy and if there are any changes .


08 Feb 2021

I only use blue pens. It is so much easier to authentic an original.

Lucy Park Newton

09 Feb 2021

I always advise signers that it is "helpful" if they sign in black ink because since I record documents electronically with the county recorder (Indiana), a number of times the blue ink has been so light that it is illegible and the document was rejected. I prefer to write with blue ink for the same reasons others have stated here, but black ink is more legible on electronic documents.

Linda Eureste

10 Feb 2021

This is very helpful Rhonda didn’t know that about Texas in Blue ink is better.

Andrea Hudson

11 Feb 2021

I use both. I've come across the request to use either black or blue on Notary Instruction sheets in closing packages. However, when not dictated, I use blue and the reason I do so, is because when you use blue on an ordinarily black printed document, whoever has an interest in the document(s) knows that it is not a copy.

Jacqueline Lewis

13 Feb 2021

I always use blue ink, it makes it easier to identify original from copy.

Lidia R Del Rey

09 Nov 2021

All depends on title which color of ink. Some will said black and same blue


25 Nov 2021

I use pencil


24 Feb 2022

No comments on indication of the signer's STATUS by the color used?

Maria Fabiola

31 Mar 2022

Hi, what kind of ink for Florida? Thank you

National Notary Association

18 May 2022

Hello. When performing marriage ceremonies, the following information is provided by the Executive Officer of the Governor (website, “Completing the Marriage Record” under “Performing Marriage Ceremonies”): “The required information in [spaces 21-25 of the Certificate of Marriage] must be completed in black ink by the person performing the ceremony – the Notary Public. You will certify the date and location of the marriage, and add your signature, name, title, and address as the person performing the ceremony. Your notary seal must also be affixed in space 23b. Witnesses are optional, and if included, they should sign in black ink in spaces 24-25.”

Cleveland LeBlanc III

20 Apr 2022

I recently had an Atty whom requested to sign a PoA in Blue Ink.

09 Jun 2022

I am a notary public in Texas what color should Texas notary Seal ink be Are Texas notaries allowed to use blue ink for notary seal

National Notary Association

10 Jun 2022

Hello. Texas does not specify a particular color of ink for Notary seals, but any ink used must leave a seal impression that is photographically reproducible: “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]).

Victor Mariscal

07 Mar 2023

Very professional on time and helpful.

Roxanne Noble Boss

06 Sep 2023

Thank you, I have a purple pen that is gel and easy to use for all the signings. I was doing a signing for a friend who also is a Notary, she said I couldn't use purple ink. So, we used blue for the same reasons given above. I read that another uses purple ink. :)

Kerri Malcolm

18 Oct 2023

What color is allowed for filling out forms to be notarized in NYS? I've had a notary tell me that because she has to sign in black ink, the form should be filled out in black ink as well. I was under the impression that NYS did not care if you used blue or black ink.

National Notary Association

20 Oct 2023

On every notarial certificate, a New York Notary must “print, typewrite, or stamp or affix by electronic means where performing an electronic notarial act in conformity with Executive Law 135-c, beneath the Notary’s signature in black ink” the following (EL 137): Notary’s name; “Notary Public State of New York” or, if applicable and preferred, “Attorney and Counselor at Law State of New York”; Name of county where Notary originally qualified for commission; Notary’s commission expiration date; Wherever required, name of county in which Notary’s certificate of official character is filed, using the words, “Certificate filed … County”.


03 Jan 2024

What about Pennsylvania?

National Notary Association

05 Jan 2024

Hello. Pennsylvania does not specify a color of ink that Notaries must use to sign.

Monique Yaptenco

15 Mar 2024 Notary Seal Requirement Ink stamp or embossing seal required, paper notarial acts. Black ink specified for stamp. Ink stamp and embossing seal may be used together to satisfy statutory requirements regarding information elements to be included in the official notarial seal.

National Notary Association

18 Mar 2024

Hello. In Maryland, “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]). From the Secretary of State's online FAQ ( "What must the notary’s stamping device contain? The notary public’s official stamp can be an ink stamp or embosser or it can also be an electronic device or process. The notary public’s official stamp must be capable of being copied together with the record to which it is affixed or attached or with which it is logically associated. A notary public’s stamping device is a public seal for purposes of § 8–607 of the Criminal Law Article."

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