Notaries are the unbiased third party that helps individuals and businesses. A notarized document formally acknowledges the signatures on contracts and letters. Notarizing documents certifies the truth and trustworthiness of the document’s contents.
Places such as banks, real estate firms, licensing service centers, law offices, and other locations offer notary services. There are also mobile notary services, like Superior Notary Services, that travel to the customer to help them with their notary needs.
Learn about the basic requirements to become a notary, personality qualifications, and whether you have to take a notary exam or not based on your residence.
The Basic Requirements
To become a notary, you will have to fulfill some basic requirements. Each state has different qualifications, so check your state government website for more information.
What all the states have in common are these requirements:
- Be at least 18 years of age or older.
- Undergo a mandated training course, if applicable.
- Take a notary exam to certify you.
- Fingerprinting so you can undergo a background check before employment.
States Required To Take the Notary Exam
Many states do not require you to take a notary exam. You may have to only undergo a training course and pay the filing fee when you fill out your application to become a certified notary.
Some states require that you take a notary exam for certification before you start self-employment or affiliate with a company. Check your state government website if your state requires the exam.
According to the National Notary Association, the states that mandate budding notary professionals to take the said exam include Colorado, California, Connecticut, Louisiana, Hawaii, Montana, Maine, Nebraska, North Carolina, New York, Oregon, Ohio, and Utah.
Wyoming residents offer the choice of taking an at-home test. However, there are also in-person examination options.
Attentive to Detail
Staying attentive to detail is a key qualification to having a notary. Especially as a self-employed notary, you will be on your own to make sure that you are interpreting documents correctly and notarizing them legally.
You must peruse the document repeatedly to reassure all agreements between each party in the contract or letter are highlighted accordingly. Some documents may need more than one signature from each party.
Before notarizing, all parties must sign the document where specified. Take a look through the document after signatures are placed on the document to reassure everything is covered.
Strong Communication Skills
To enhance stronger communication skills, you must learn active listening. Listen to what the customer needs from you. If you need more details, ask questions to clarify what they mean so you fully understand what they want. As you build understanding, help your customers obtain what they want while operating within your legal bounds.
Before You Go Notarize Your First Document
Pursuing a career as a notary is an exciting venture that will open you to new job skills and income opportunities. Be sure to study carefully for the exam if your state requires it, get certified, and refine your soft skills to leap into a notary career today.