Renewing Your Notary Commission: Explained

April 18, 2024 / Notary Association of America
A person in a suit at a desk with a name desk placard that says Notary Public

Most notary commissions last between four and 10 years, with four being the most common. If your commission expires soon and you've never renewed before (or need a refresher), these general tips will help you get started.

But remember, there is no universal renewal process. Always review your state's specific notary laws and renewal requirements.

Meet Your State's Commission Requirements

Like with your initial application, renewing your commission means you must meet your state's requirements. Since you were already commissioned at least once, we assume you're at least 18 years old and a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident.

But, if you've changed your legal name or address or were charged with any felony convictions, you'll need to disclose that in your renewal application.

Get Your New Notary Bond

Notaries with surety bonds must get a new one for their upcoming commission term.

Remember, bonds act as a notary's promise to uphold the law and perform their duties honestly. If you make a notarization mistake that causes a client financial harm, the bond protects the client. Learn more about bonds here.

Many insurance companies provide bonds online. Our comprehensive notary renewal packages always include your state-required bond.

Complete Education (If Needed)

If your state made you complete a notary education course during the initial application, you'll likely need to complete another one. Thankfully, exams usually aren't repeated during the renewal process.

States that require training to renew include:

Even if no education is required, review your state's notary handbook. Doing so will help you avoid costly mistakes.

Submit the Renewal Application

Once you get your bond and complete your education (if necessary), it's time to complete your renewal application. If your state uses a proprietary online renewal system, give yourself enough time to make sure you can log into your account before starting.

For states that use paper applications, our all-in-one renewal packages pre-fill them for you so you can apply error-free every time. To simplify your renewal, select your state on our website and click Renew Your Notary.

If you're not ready to purchase anything yet, that's fine! Many of our state pages include basic renewal instructions within the FAQs page or with a dedicated renewal page.

Get Your Notary Supplies

After finishing your renewal application, you'll need an updated stamp and seal — especially if yours displays your commission expiration date.

There are many reputable online stamp dealers with quality options ranging between $25 and $35. Why not spend less time looking and let us take care of it for you? Our state renewal packages include a self-inking stamp (that's available in many different colors) and other essential supplies.

If you need stamp ink, oath stamps or gold foil labels, our supplies page has plenty of options to keep you stocked for your new commission term.

Lastly, consider protecting yourself from liability with E&O insurance. Your notary bond protects the public, but errors and omissions insurance protects you!

Visit this E&O insurance overview page to learn more about how you can avoid paying out of pocket if you make a notarization mistake.

We're Here to Help

You've already completed an initial commission application, so renewing will feel familiar. But if you ever run into trouble or have questions, our dedicated support staff can answer them!

Contact us over the phone, through email or even with a live chat service. We want to make renewing your notary commission easy.