A notary public is appointed by the state government to ensure the authenticity of documents. A notary public may also take affidavits, verify signatures, administer oaths, and act as a witness in the signing of contracts and other written agreements.
Each notary public has a special identification number and seal or stamp used in the notarization of documents.
Notary public are entrusted with an enormous responsibility by the government, and as such should also be trustworthy and comfortable with handling confidential information. Keeping updated on applicable laws and regulations is a must.
As state law governs the appointment of notaries, requirements vary greatly. Most commonly, candidates have a high school diploma or its equivalent and U.S. citizenship.
Specialized notary training is offered through the National Notary Association (NNA), which can provide an excellent background in notary and applicable state laws. Those who successfully complete the program may take a certification exam to be a NNA Certified Notary Signing Agent.
Incomes among notaries vary greatly by experience and location. Since many perform their notary tasks in conjunction with other work positions, it’s difficult to gauge approximate income.
A notary public may be self-employed, although many work for the government or in private industries including real estate, escrow, and insurance.