Montana 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 Montana.

 

Montana Notary Public: a person authorized to perform certain legal formalities such as: acknowledgements, oaths or affirmations, signature witness, depositions, protest instruments and certify copies. A notary can also be referred to as a signing agent. The Montana Notary Public Handbook is effective for helping notaries.

How can I become a notary in Montana?

The Secretary of State has approved notary training classes that you need to complete before being able to fill out the Application for Notary Appointment. You must receive an 80% or above on the Montana Notary Exam and attach your test certificate to your application. There is a filing fee of $25 that you need to submit along with your oath of office and proof of a $10,000 bond.

Who can become a notary in Montana?

  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent legal resident
  • Must be reside or have regular employment in Montana
  • Must be able to read and write in English Must not have had a notary commission denied or revoked in any state during the past 10 years
  • Must not have acted fraudulently, dishonestly or deceitful in the past 10 years
  • Must not have been convicted of a felony involving fraud, dishonesty or deceit during the past 10 years

Where can I practice my notary services?

Anywhere in the state of Montana. There are some cases where notaries are able to perform in North Dakota and Wyoming, but they must always follow Montana's notarial laws.

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?

In the state of Montana it is mandatory to take a comprehensive training that has been approved by the Secretary of State. After training, you must complete an exam with a score of 80% or higher. The certificate of completion must be submitted with your application. The Montana Notary Public Handbook is a useful reference to study.

Do I need a bond or insurance?

ou will need a surety bond as a notary in Montana. This bond needs to be in the amount of $10,000. 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 $25
  • 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?

  • Notary Seal Stamp

A self-inking or pre-inked stamp is required on all notarial acts. Your stamp must use black or blue ink. The stamp requires a rectangular border and should be approximately 1" x 2 1/2" in size. Your stamp will include the following text: Name, Notary Public for the State of Montana, where you are residing and Commission Expiration Date. Your stamp will have the round Notarial Seal for the State of Montana with your Name featured again.

  • Notary Records Journal

Journal of notarial acts is required because it makes it harder for pages to be misplaced and keeps all notarizing secure.

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.

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?

After four years, your Montana notary public commission will expire.