Your Guide to Becoming a Notary Public and Notary Exams

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Become a Notary: North Carolina State Information

Becoming a notary can be an important and exciting option for many people. Notaries perform many important civic duties and are representatives of their states and counties who ensure the validity of important documents and transactions. Many people find that becoming a notary is a fulfilling and worthwhile career or part time job. Each and every state has different laws for becoming a notary. Learn about your state's specific process to become a notary including notary eligibility and step by step instructions.

Becoming a Notary in North Carolina and North Carolina's Notary Exam Requirements

Become a Notary in North Carolina

In the state of North Carolina you will be commissioned and approved to be a public notary for the entire state which means you can operate in all cities and counties. The process will be conducted and reviewed by the Secretary of State. Like in all states, you will have to meet certain requirements to become a notary public in accordance with the law, as well as submit an application and pay applicable fees.

North Carolina Notary Requirements

In order to become a notary in the state of North Carolina, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Purchase the Notary Public Guidebook for North Carolina
  • At least 18 years of age
  • Resident of North Carolina or have a regular workplace in the state
  • Completed an approved public notary course
  • Pass a written exam
  • Reside legally in the United States
  • Read, write, and speak English
  • Possess a high school diploma or equivalent
  • Have the recommendation of one publicly elected official (as part of the application)

North Carolina Notary Term Length

A notary in the state of North Carolina is appointed for a period of five years. If you wish to continue to be a notary in the state of North Carolina after five years, you must renew your notary appointment.

North Carolina Notary Education Requirements

In the state of North Carolina, you are required by law to take a notary education course either through the state or an authorized notary course provider. The course is six hours in length and can be either taken in person or online. When you submit your application, you will have to submit proof that you have taken the necessary course and passed the exam. Many of these courses are offered at community colleges.

North Carolina Notary Exam

In the state of North Carolina you are required by law to pass a notary exam to become an official notary. You will take this exam at an approved state location and must receive at least 80% to pass.

North Carolina Notary Bond Requirements

In the state of North Carolina you are not required by law to submit a bond.

North Carolina Notary Application Process

  • Step 1:

    Find a state approved North Carolina notary education course and complete the 6 hour class in person. You will need to pass the exam as part of this course.
  • Step 2:

    Complete the application form for becoming a North Carolina notary public. You can download the form on the website of the Secretary of State. This will include a $50.00 application fee. You can send your completed application and all materials to:
    Notary Public Section
    Department of the Secretary of State
    PO Box 29626
    Raleigh, NC 27626-0626
  • Step 3:

    If you are approved to become a notary, you will receive a North Carolina Notary Oath Notification letter. Make sure to follow the directions very carefully. As part of finishing the North Carolina notary process, you will need to take an Oath with the Register of Deeds who will charge a $10.00 fee.
  • Step 4:

    Purchase the necessary notary equipment for conducting business as a North Carolina notary public. All of these must be filed with the state per the directions in the Notary Commission packet. This includes:
    1. An official North Carolina notary public embossing seal or rubber stamp seal
    2. Recommended: A notary public journal
  • Step 5:

    Start your career as a North Carolina notary public. You may consider the following books to help create a flourishing business in your community. They offer great advice for marketing your business and finding ongoing clients in your community.
  • Step 6:

    Consider purchasing Errors and Omissions Insurance. Most notaries consider this as an essential to running a successful notary business. Errors and Omissions Insurance protects you, up to the limit of your insurance, from any mistakes you may make as a notary that result in legal actions. This is different than a bond because a bond protects the public; whereas Errors and Omissions Insurance protects you.