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Steps To Become a Notary Public | California

Updated: Feb 3, 2022

These steps were taken from the website. National Notary Association is a trusted leader in serving and educating California's Notaries.

Complete the State-Required Training and Receive Proof of Completion from Instructor

  • Online Training Course - train on your schedule, at home or in your office. Interactive lessons and real-life examples make learning simple. Once you have completed the online training you will need to complete a Livescan, get a 2x2 passport photo and sign up to take and complete the exam.

  • Live Training Course - choose from a wide range of training locations, seminars are fast paced and interactive. This option takes care of the exam, photo and livescan requirements all at the same time. The instructors give you tips and tricks to remembering the laws, requirements and content on the exam which is administered immediately following the class. I personally use this option every time, and recommend it is a no brainer.

Fill out Notary Application

  • Applications are provided at NNA live seminar locations. If you download an application, be sure to also print the instruction page.

Submit Application and Take Exam

The following are required to submit your application and take the exam:

  • Current photo ID (state Driver's Licence or ID Card issued by the DMV)

  • Proof of completion from your training class

  • Completed and signed application

  • 2"x 2" passport-style application photo

  • Live Scan fingerprints

  • A $40 application fee payable to the Secretary of State. Payment must be a check or money order; cash is not accepted. Include the last four digits of your Social Security number on your check.

Pass Exam

  • You will receive your test results by email or mail within 15 business days from CPS HR Consulting

Receive Your Commission Packet

The processing time for your Notary Commission can take 6 to 10 weeks. You wil receive your commission packet from the State, Here is what you will receive in your Commission Packet:

  • Filing instructions

  • Your Notary Public commission certificate

  • Two Notary Public Oath and Certificate of Filing forms

  • A Certificate of Authorization to Manufacture Notary Public Seals (see step #6 below for details)

Order Your Notary Seal and Supplies

  • To receive your official state seal, mail the original (not a copy) Certificate of Authorization that you received in your state commission packet to the NNA or the company making your seal stamp.

  • You also need to order your required notary supplies. Many notaries purchase their supplies when they register for training (includes journal, which is mandatory; Acknowledgement and Jurat Forms, which you can just print from the internet or order if you wish; Notary Law Primer, this is a great tool to have; Inkless finger print, required for real property documents). There are additional supplies you can choose from as well, these are just the ones you will use the most.

File Your Bond and Take Your Oath

  • You have 30 days from your Commission of Authorization date to file your bond and take your Oath of Office at your county clerk's office. Follow instructions provided in the packet to complete this step.

Begin Performing Notary Duties

  • Once you have filed your oath and bond and received your Notary seal stamp, you may begin performing the duties of a Notary Public...congratulations!

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