Michigan Notary Frequently Asked Questions

Are you a new notary public? This is a list of our most frequently asked questions about becoming a notary
and what supplies you will need in the state of Michigan .

 

Michigan Notary Public: a person authorized to perform certain legal formalities such as: acknowledgements, oaths, affirmations, jurats, take depositions, issue subpoenas fro civil actions and probate proceedings, copy certification of certain documents and execute protests. A notary can also be referred to as a signing agent.

How can I become a notary in Michigan?

Complete the Notary Application and submit it, with a $10 filing fee, to the county clerk where you reside. Aside from the application, you must obtain a $10,000 surety bond and take an oath of office. Within 90 days of your application approval, this must be send to the Michigan Department of State of the Great Seal.

Who can become a notary in Michigan?

  • Anyone 18 years of age or older
  • Must be a resident or maintain a business in Michigan
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or have proof of legal residency
  • Must be able to read and write in English
  • Must not have any felony convictions from the last 10 years
  • Must not have been convicted of two or more misdemeanors
  • Must not have three or more misdemeanors, from the last five years, that involve violation of the Michigan Notary Public Act

Where can I practice my notary services?

Anywhere in the state of Michigan.

Who can I notarize for?

You can notarize for any member of the public who makes a sensible request and meets all the requirements for notarization. For Example: Must have proof of identity and be physically present.

What kind of training do I need?

The state of Michigan makes it mandatory for notaries to read the current statues that regulate notarial acts, but no exam is required.

Do I need a bond or insurance?

All Michigan notaries are required to obtain a $10,000 surety bond. The bond must be filed in the country you have been appointment. Licensed attorneys are not required to have a surety bond if they are in good standing with the state of Michigan. This is verified by including your state bar number with your application.

Errors and Omissions insurance (E&O) is NOT required, but it is recommended for your protection.

What are the upfront costs?

  • The application filing fee is $10
  • The price of the bonds and insurance will vary depending on the vendor
  • Prices on Notary Supplies may vary (Notary seal stamps and embossers)

What type of equipment will I need?

No equipment is required, but you are strongly encouraged to use the following

  • Notary Seal Stamp or Embosser

Stamps and seals are customized with Name, Notary Public, State of Michigan, County, Commission Expiration Date and Acting in the County of____.

  • Notary Records Journal

Journal of notarial acts is suggested for keeping track of all notarization for your own protection because it makes it harder for pages to be misplaced or removed.

Should I get business cards or marketing materials?

Although not a requirement, if you believe it is helpful for your business to have these, then it is a good idea. If you work for a company as a notary singing agent, then discuss with them if this would be necessary.

Is there legal risk?

Yes, since being a notary grants you certain permissions and responsibilities, there is also the need for insurance which was noted earlier.

How much legal risk will I face?

Risk should be assessed on a case by case basis, but being a notary signing agent comes with the responsibility of fully understanding the risks involved. Having E&O Insurance can potentially reduce your exposure to risk.

How long does my commission last?

A Michigan notary term is valid for six or seven years ending on the notary's birthday. A term can be no more than seven years and no less than six years. Then you can apply to renew your commission.