How to Become a Notary Public in Connecticut How to Become a Notary Public in Connecticut

How to Become a Notary Public in Connecticut

How to Become a Notary Public in Connecticut (Get your Notary Commission)

Here are the steps you need to take to become a Notary Public in Connecticut:

  1. Ensure you meet all the following requirements to become a notary in Connecticut.
  2. Review the Connecticut Notary Public Manual and start preparing for the state-mandated examination.
  3. Fill out the Jurat and Writing Sample form in your own handwriting. A notary or authorized person must be present to witness this form.
  4. Ask someone who’s known you professionally for a year or a public official to complete your Certificate of Character.
  5. Register and submit your application, exam, and $120 fee through the eLicense website.
  6. You will get your Certificate of Appointment online a few days after requesting it. 
  7. File your certificate with your town clerk’s office within 30 days, and deposit a $10 filing fee to take the oath of office there. You’ll pay a $10 fee; you can record your certificate with additional town clerks where you plan to serve.
  8. Purchase a notary seal and journal for record-keeping.
  9. Obtain Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance to protect yourself financially.
  10. Take continuing education courses and consult notary experts if you need further training or guidance. Visit BlueNotary Academy.

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What are the Requirements to Become a Notary in Connecticut?

There are some basic qualifications you’ll need to meet:

  • You must be at least 18 years old and either a Connecticut resident or have a principal place of business in the State.
  • A spotless criminal record free of felonies or crimes involving moral turpitude is essential.
  • You cannot have any prior revocations, suspensions, or restrictions on professional licenses or notary commissions (in Connecticut or elsewhere).
  • No previous notary misconduct is permitted.

How much does it cost to become a Notary Public in Connecticut?

Application Fee costs $120 for new applicants, $60 for renewals (paid to the Secretary of State), 

And the Oath of Office Filing costs $10 (paid to your town clerk).

How long does it take to become a Connecticut Notary Public?

It can take five to seven business days to become commissioned. This time frame depends on how quickly you complete the steps and how long the Secretary of State takes to process your application and email your Certificate of Appointment.

How long does a Connecticut Notary Commission last?

A Connecticut Notary Commission is valid for five years. Each term is separate, and you’ll need to renew your commission to continue performing notary services.

Do I need to take an exam?

Absolutely, passing an online exam with all questions answered correctly is a must to become a public notary.

What kind of supplies will I need?

You will need a notary seal and a journal. While they are not legally mandatory, they’re considered best practices. Buying a high-quality inked notary seal that displays your name, title (“Notary Public”), State (“Connecticut”), and maybe even commission expiry date.

Furthermore, maintain a numbered-page notary record book for meticulous record-keeping. This ensures easy identification “of missing pages, which is” crucial in “the case of legal situations.

Do I need a surety bond or insurance?

No, a bond isn’t required. However, many choose to purchase optional E&O (errors and omissions) insurance to protect themselves from potential legal expenses.

Connecticut Notary Public FAQs

Thinking about becoming a Notary Public in Connecticut? This FAQ section offers detailed answers to common questions, empowering you to navigate the application process and understand your role as a commissioned notary.

Who oversees Notary Publics in Connecticut?

The Secretary of State’s Office, Business Services Division, located in Hartford, CT, is responsible for issuing Notary Public commissions and overseeing all notary-related matters within the State. Their website provides the State’s sable resources, including application forms, licensing requirements, and notary best practices.

Is training required to become a Connecticut Notary Public?

While formal training isn’t mandatory, it’s strongly recommended, especially for new notaries. Understanding the legal aspects of notarization, proper document examination procedures, and best practices for fraud prevention isn’t necessary to perform your duties confidently and minimize liability.

Can someone help me with the application process?

Absolutely! Several companies offer comprehensive Notary Public packages that include:

  • Online courses, study guides, and reference manuals can provide you with the knowledge you need to pass the test and perform your job productively.
  • Should you want to start the procedure on your own, you can look up the application (for new Notaries only) and submit data on the Secretary of State’s website.
  • Some companies can guide you through the application process and submit all necessary documents correctly.

Where can I perform notarizations as a Connecticut Notary?

Your commission allows you to notarize documents anywhere within the State of Connecticut. However, some employers may have restrictions on where you can perform notarizations during work hours.

Who can I notarize documents for?

You can notarize documents for anyone in the State, with a few important exceptions:

  • You cannot notarize your own signature.
  • You cannot notarize documents where you have a financial interest or are a named party. This includes documents involving yourself, your spouse, or close relatives.
  • Your employer may limit who you can notarize for during work hours to avoid any potential conflicts of interest.

How much can I charge for a notarization in Connecticut?

Connecticut notaries can charge no more than a fee of $5 for each notarization act. The cost compensates you for witnessing and providing the signature of a document. In spite of the act itself, you could charge a trip fee to cover any expenses spent during your trip to complete a notarization. At the moment, the maximum travel price per mile is $0.35.

As a best practice, always inform the signer of your fees in advance. This includes both the per-notarization act fee and the separate travel fee (if applicable). Transparency regarding your fees helps avoid any confusion or potential disputes after the notarization is complete.

How to Become an Online Notary in Connecticut

Is Online Notary Legal in Connecticut?

Yes! Connecticut allowed remote online notarization (RON) for some document types on October 1, 2023, after a temporary COVID-era Executive Order that ended in July 2021. 

On June 12, 2023, Governor Ned Lamont signed Public Act 23-28, dubbed An Act Concerning Remote Notarial Acts. This law took effect on October 1, 2023, and officially legalized RON for Connecticut notaries.

When doing a RON notarization, you and the signer must both be able to converse in real-time through two-way audio-visual technology. This serves as a basis for evident recognition and proof of the signer’s identity. 

While RON has now been permitted, it is important to note that it’s still restricted to several document categories in Connecticut, such as estate planning documents, healthcare directives, and real estate closing packages.

For a complete list of prohibited executions, you can review Substitute Senate Bill No. 1040 (Public Act No. 23-28) An Act Concerning Remote Notarial Acts.

What happens if I move or change my name after becoming a Notary?

It is critical that you share any alteration to your address or legal name with the Secretary of State’s Office within one month of making the change. If you move away, you can change your address digitally for free using its eLicense account. Simply contact them at [email protected] and ask for a password reset for your account. Once you have acquired access, you can edit your address instantly in your online profile.

To change your name, you’ll need to complete a dedicated Notary Public Change of Name form. Download the form online or request it from the Secretary of State’s office. Once completed, submit the form electronically to [email protected]. You’ll then receive an email with an invoice for the $15 statutory name change fee. Upon payment, the Secretary of State will send you a new Certificate of Appointment reflecting your updated legal name,

Updating your address electronically through your eLicense account is sufficient unless you’ve also changed your business or personal address where you plan to perform notarizations. However, regardless of address changes, you’ll need to obtain a new notary seal with your new legal name. You’ll use one for your notarizations.

What’s the potential legal risk involved in being a Notary Public?

The level of legal risk you face depends on various factors. Even those who are most diligent and keen on detailed notaries can occasionally make mishaps. As a notary public, any unforeseen mistakes or acts of misconduct on your behalf can have major monetary repercussions for you personally and maybe even the document’s signatory. Examples include lawsuits filed by the signers who were hit with economic harm as the consequence of a notary’s error. Legal defense can be expensive, even if you’re ultimately found not liable.

Maintain accurate and thorough documentation of all notarizations done, including the date, kind of notarization, signer information, and any essential information about the document. Having thorough paperwork helps your case if any issues with the law develop in the near future.

How do I renew my Connecticut Notary Public Commission?

The Secretary of State’s office will voluntarily mail you your renewal application within 90 days before the present license expires. This application typically offers instructions and a slot for entering your new information. The renewal application fees are $60.

While renewing your commission, you could also purchase a new notary seal with your updated license expiration date. If your current notary record book (journal) is full, you could look into getting a new one.

If you miss the 90-day renewal time frame, you can still reinstate your commission by mailing a reinstatement notice to the Secretary of State at [email protected].

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