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How to find Notary work during a business downturn

Two people shaking hands

Updated 5-21-24. For many Notaries, loan signings have been their business focus for many years. While I offer NSA services as part of my business, I know that isn’t enough to maximize my business and protect it if there’s a downturn in the market as we have seen in recent months. In fact, much of what I do would be considered “general” Notary work. I’ve been successful following this avenue because even when the real estate market is down, there are plenty of general Notary opportunities with local businesses, including:

  • Law firms
  • Hospitals and healthcare providers
  • Independent car dealers
  • Bail bondsmen
  • Schools and universities

Law firms

I’ll let you in on a secret: many law offices don’t have on-staff Notaries. Many lawyers today don’t have big offices or support staff. And that means that if a client needs a notarization, they need the help of an independent Notary like you.

This has been even more the case since COVID. Since the pandemic, many places that used to offer Notary services, like banks, have significantly limited the types of notarizations they are willing to provide. This is why law practices offer mobile Notaries great opportunities.

If you do pursue work with legal practices, you should familiarize yourself with the types of notarizations commonly needed by lawyers and their clients. When you do meet with a potential legal practice client, whether it’s the attorney, an office manager or a paralegal, look the part and dress appropriately. Knowledge is important, but so, too, is being professional. If you’ll be meeting clients, you’ll be acting as the attorney’s representative. 

Dropping by a law office to introduce yourself is an option, but before doing so, check the practice’s website for their office hours. A carefully crafted e-mail or phone message may be needed first to get your foot in the door.

Hospitals and healthcare providers

There are numerous Notary opportunities at medical facilities (hospitals, elder care facilities, etc.). Patients often need various types of notarizations, including powers of attorney and advanced health directives, but few facilities have Notaries on hand.

You’ll need to approach medical facilities carefully. Don’t just drop in. Contact the business office with a call or carefully crafted e-mail, asking for an appointment with a business director or someone else authorized to call in an outside Notary.

Again, ask what services the facility needs — for example, the types of notarizations that are needed, times of day that you might need to come in (including night and weekend hours), etc. — and address how you can solve them. 

And it’s not just patients who need Notaries. Doctors need your help, too. Medical partnerships are business entities, and they need business documents regularly notarized. Again, contact a business director or office manager to arrange a meeting and discuss how you can help them with any business transactions that need a Notary.

Independent car dealers

Selling or buying a car involves numerous documents, and this provides Notaries work opportunities such as notarizing vehicle releases when a seller has lost the pink slip or notarizing loan signing documents for vehicles being sold over the internet.

A direct approach might be your best tactic here — call or e-mail ahead and make an appointment for a time that is convenient for the dealer. Again, you should ask what types of notarizations the business needs most often, find out what type of issues they face that a Notary can help with, and offer solutions.

Bail bondsmen

If you are willing to work outside normal business hours, you might want to approach bail bondsmen in your area and offer them your Notary services. Bail bondsmen often keep odd hours and they usually don’t employ Notaries. Plus, few Notaries who work for defense attorneys are available to work after hours with bail bondsmen, so this is a good opportunity if you are an independent mobile Notary available outside the normal 9-5 schedule.

Schools and universities

If you offer apostille courier services along with your Notary services, schools and universities often need to complete apostilles for students traveling or studying overseas.

Contacting the administrators of overseas or travel programs via phone or e-mail at a school would be the best approach for getting started here.

These examples are just some of the avenues you can try. They worked for me, but some may not be perfect for you. You’re the one who will know best, so try reaching out to different businesses and finding the ones that suit you. No matter where you find more general Notary work, your goal should be to build your own solid customer base that will remain constant through the highs and lows of our economy. 

Laura Biewer is the founder of and owns At Your Service Mobile Notary in Modesto, California. She also teaches seminars for the National Notary Association and is a regular presenter at the NNA's annual Conferences.


Add your comment

Eileen N .Taylor

13 Jun 2023

As a fellow Notary thank you for the advice

Great advise will take it in consideration, I am starting this new business and will try as many fields necessary and see will work the best for me.

17 Jun 2023

Highly appreciate for your professionalism, I will follow up. Thank you Ma'am.

Wendy Shaw

26 Jun 2023

Thanks very helpful!

26 Jun 2023

Thanks for the tips. I’m a brand new notary and NSA. The hardest part is to get started. Just like with everything else.

GUstavo Rivas

26 Jun 2023

Great advise will take it in consideration, I am starting this new business and will try as many fields necessary and see will work the best for me.


26 Jun 2023

How much can a mobile notary charge?

National Notary Association

26 Jun 2023

Hello. That depends on your state's Notary fee schedule. To help us answer your question, can you tell us what state you are commissioned in?

Sharron Suttles

26 Jun 2023

Thank you for this great information, it is good to know this. I would have never probably really thought of pursuing these avenues of business. I will definitely look into these clients for business.

Barbara Beals

26 Jun 2023

I am just starting out as a notary, and I really appreciate all the information.


26 Jun 2023

Great advice - thank you!

Mimi Starks

26 Jun 2023

Much appreciated reading this information. Extremely resourceful. Thanks!

Andy Romero

26 Jun 2023

Thank you so much for the wealth of information you provide.

Good tips

26 Jun 2023

Good tips

Top Tier Signatures LLC

26 Jun 2023

Thanks so much for sharing!

Trudae Weber

26 Jun 2023

Great advice. Thank you so much!!


27 Jun 2023

This is great information. It is very helpful to know what is available to help generate income. Thanks for sharing.

Laura biewer

27 Jun 2023

For in-depth direction and training to market and become more familiar what makes each line of work special consider joining a notary community like Notary business builder (NBB) www.join

Wanda Iris Guzman

28 Jun 2023

Great information...I appreciate it. Thank-You!

david larson

28 Jun 2023

Illinois what is the prevailing charge? TY

National Notary Association

12 Jul 2023

Hello. Please see here for information on changes to Notary fees in Illinois:

Denese Ford

29 Jun 2023

Thank you great tips, I m just starting out as a notary. Is there a way to learn about what types of notarizations these different business need?

National Notary Association

30 Jun 2023

Hello. Please see this article for more information:

Ericka Crawford

01 Jul 2023

Great advice will definitely do some major networking like this to hopefully expand my notary service and broaden my skill set for different business notary documents signing. Thank you for sharing!

Joan Holsten

07 Jul 2023

Thank you, very good advice.


07 Jul 2023

Thank you for the information, I just started and was wondering what channels would I use to start to look into for signings.

sheila Clarke

03 Jun 2024

Thanks Laura, very good advice

Carol Walton

03 Jun 2024

I want advice on how to grow my cliental as a notary. I want to do more in my community being a Notary to make money and being available to many.

National Notary Association

07 Jun 2024

Hello. This article and video has suggestions on how to let people know about your Notary services through community work and volunteering:

Linda Patterson

03 Jun 2024

Very good information. I am a brand new notary. I have yet to do my first signing. I signed up at find a notary with the NNA. I haven’t gotten any calls, so I guess I will have to market myself. Thanks for your advice.

Yolanda P.

05 Jun 2024

Thank you for the helpful advice and your service.

Stephen Cook

09 Jun 2024

Thanks for the advice! It is greatly appreciated!

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