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How to get your notary public license

Requirements

You must be:

  • At least 18 years of age
  • Able to read and write English
  • A citizen or permanent legal resident of the United States
  • Live in Washington State, or have a place of employment or practice in Washington

How to apply

  1. Get a $10,000 surety bond from any insurance company qualified to write surety bonds in Washington. Also, make sure the surety bond:
    • Covers your 4-year notary public term.
    • Shows your name and it matches your name and signature on the application.
    • Is separate from Errors and Omissions Insurance. We only need proof of the surety bond.
  2. Complete a Notary Public Commission Application.
  3. Send us all of the following:
    • Completed, signed application.
    • Copy of your surety bond. (Don't send us your Errors and Omissions policy.)
    • A check or money order payable to the 'Department of Licensing' for:
      • $30 - not applying for an endorsement
      • $45 - applying for an endorsement

Allow 30 days for us to process your application.

How to apply for an electronic notary endorsement

You must:

  • Apply for or already have a notary public commission.
  • Request an electronic notary endorsement. It'll expire the same date as your commission. You can:
    • Apply for the endorsement when you apply for a notary public commission (by mail only)
    • or
    • Add the endorsement to an existing notary public commission (online or by mail).
  • Tell us the name of the technology provider you'll be using within 30 days of getting the endorsement. You can't perform any electronic notarizations until you've provided this information, either online or by email: notaries@dol.wa.gov.

How to apply for the endorsement

After you receive your commission

Get your stamp or seal

  • After you get your license, you can get your stamp from:
    • your bonding company,
    • stamp providers such as office supply stores, or
    • online.
  • By law, the vendor must see a copy of your notary license before making your stamp or seal.
  • The notary stamp must include commission number, meet the size and content requirements:
  • For electronic notarization endorsement, within 30 days give us the name of the technology provider you'll use.
  • Keep a journal of all notarizations
    The journal must be:
    • A permanent, bound book with numbered pages. An electronic journal can be kept in addition to the physical journal, but can't replace it.
    • Kept in a locked and secured area under your exclusive control.
    • Kept for 10 years after the last notarization recorded in the journal.
    Journal entries must be made at the time of the notarization and must include:
    • The date and time of the notarization.
    • A description of the document or act being notarized.
    • Full name, address, and signature of each person requesting the notarization.
    • Brief description of the identification method.
    If you resign your commission, or if you're suspended or revoked, you must tell us where the journal is located.
  • Read the current and upcoming notary public laws and rules.
  • Take a notary education class. Optional classes are available to new notaries and update current notaries on changes in laws and rules. See Education Providers.
  • Join our LISTSERV® to get email updates.
  • Tell us if your address changes. You're required to update us during your commission. See How to change your name or address.

Questions? Need help?

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