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Find a Notary > California Notary > Become a Notary

Become a California Notary Public
Become a California Notary Public
To become a California Notary Public, the first step is to contact the 
California Notary Division which is run by the Secretary of State's office.  
Please be advised that California notary laws change frequently and that 
notaries in this state are always required to keep up to date with all notary 
laws at all times.
Qualifications and requirements
To apply for a California notary commission you must be at least 18 
years old, and be a legal resident of the state of California.
All notary public applicants must complete a background check by the FBI 
and Department of Justice.  They must also get live-scan fingerprinting done.  
All applicants must also attach a 2" by 2" photo to the back of their completed 
California notary application.  All applicants must complete a six hour government 
approved course before taking the California notary exam.  You would most likely 
be disqualified from getting a notary commission if you failed to disclose any 
arrests or convictions, or had been convicted of a felony.
The notary public section ( division ) is in charge of approving notary curriculum, 
and issuing certificates of approval to notary instructors. They are also in charge 
of appointing notary commission, certifying the authenticity of notary signatures, 
issuing paperwork authorizing the manufacturing of california notary public seals, 
keeping and distributing a list of authorized seal vendors, enforcing child support 
enforcement program, and investigating violations of notary law as well as taking 
appropriate actions.  The California notary public section can suspend, or revoke 
a notary commission if the notary has been found guilty of violating notary law or 
noncompliance with a child or family support orders.
After you pass the California notary public examination.
The examination has become very difficult, to the point that most test takers fail 
the first time.  After you pass the examination, you must wait for your commissions 
packet.  Your commissions packet will include an authorization for a vendor to 
manufacture a notary seal(s) for you.  It will also include your notary public 
commission which you should keep in a safe place. There will be two notary public 
oath and certificate of filing forms. There will also be a list of authorized 
manufacturers for notary seals and embossers.
Now, you will need to purchase a notary bond, get your notary seal made, and purchase 
one or more notary journals.  Getting acknowledgment and jurat form pads would be highly 
recommended at this stage too. An ink less thumb printer would be another critical item to 
The next step is to file your oath and bond at the county clerk's office. This step must 
be completed within (30) days of the commencement of your commission.
After you are done with all of the above steps, then you are free to market your 
notary services or provide notary services for your employer.

Related Links
California Notary Fees and FAQ
Become a California Notary Public
California Notary Acknowledgment and Jurat Information
California Notary Law
California Notary Classes and Seminars
California Notary Public General Information
Notary Acts