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Notary Rotary

Welcome to Notary Public 101

Here, you can learn how to become a notary, how to renew your notary commission, and where to find educational opportunities for notaries public.

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Notary Education
Become a Notary in North Carolina
Find a Notary Class in North Carolina
Begin Notary Public 101

In most states, becoming a notary public involves meeting a number of requirements. Generally, you must be 18 years of age, not have a serious criminal history, and successfully complete an application process. In some states, the notary application process will require notary education (ranging from a simple online course to a notary class and competency exam) and a background check, as well as the purchase of a surety bond. A more thorough explanation for your state is described below.


Become a North Carolina notary public with Notary Rotary, Inc.


North Carolina notary public eligibility criteria (N.C.G.S. Chapter 10B) includes:

  • Be at least 18 years of age or legally emancipated as defined in Article 35 of Chapter 7B of the General Statutes.
  • Reside or have a regular place of work or business in North Carolina
  • Reside legally in the United States
  • Speak, read, and write the English language
  • Possess a high school diploma or equivalent
  • Pass the course of instruction described in Chapter 10B, unless the person is a licensed member of the North Carolina State Bar, including a written examination.
  • Purchase and keep as a reference the most recent manual approved by the Secretary that describes the duties and authority of notaries public. This should be done before progressing with any of the steps listed below.
  • Submit an application containing no significant misstatement or omission of fact. Every application shall include the signature of the applicant written with pen and ink. The applicant shall then acknowledge the signature before a person authorized to administer oaths.
  • Obtain the recommendation of one publicly elected official in North Carolina and submit the recommendation with the application. The requirement of this subdivision shall not apply to any applicant who seeks to receive the oath of office from the register of deeds of a county where more than 15,000 active notaries public are on record on January 1 of the year when the application is filed.

Term of appointment:

A person commissioned as a notary public for the state of North Carolina may perform notarial acts in any part of the state for a period of five (5) years, unless the commission is revoked or resigned.

Step 1: Download and complete the North Carolina notary public application

Initial North Carolina Notary Application

Download the application and complete it according to the instructions provided. You will need to leave the mandatory education information blank until you complete Step 2 and have your instructor complete their section of the application.

Be sure to follow all instructions, as any incomplete or incorrect information will cause a delay in the commissioning process if not outright rejection of the application. You will need to make arrangements to have a notary public take your acknowledgment under oath or affirmation that the information provided in the application is true. The Find a Notary feature from Notary Rotary may be helpful in contacting a notary public. Simply enter your home ZIP code, and click search for a list of notaries public in your area.

If you have questions concerning this application you should contact the Notary Public Section.  The Notary Public Section is available for assistance from 8:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday, with the exception of holidays. You may contact the Notary Public Section by phone at (919) 807-2219, by e-mail at

Step 2: Complete the mandatory notary public course of study and pass the required written examination

An applicant must satisfactorily complete a course of study that is approved by the Secretary of State consisting of not less than six hours of classroom instruction provided by a community college in North Carolina, unless the person is a licensed member of the North Carolina Bar. Initial applicants, excluding licensed members of the North Carolina Bar, must also pass a written examination approved by the Secretary of State with a score of 80% or better.

You will need to locate a college offering these classes and complete the mandatory education before moving on to step 3.

Step 3: Send the completed application packet to the Notary Public Section

You will need to send the completed application and a non-refundable $50.00 application fee payable to "NC Secretary of State," to the Secretary of State office, Notary Public Section, at the following address:

Notary Public Section
Department of the Secretary of State
PO Box 29626
Raleigh, NC 27626-0626

The Secretary of State's office will process your application within 72 hours of receipt. Please allow two weeks to receive your notice.

Step 4: Take the notary public oaths of office

The Notary Public Section will process your application and return to you an oath notification letter. When you receive the oath notification letter, go to the Register of Deeds in the county in which your commission is issued to take the oaths of office. The oaths must be taken within 45 days of the issue date listed on the oath notification letter. If 45 days lapse before the oaths are taken, a new application and $50.00 fee must be resubmitted. Notary appointments are NOT valid until the oaths of office are taken. The oaths must be taken with each appointment of commission. The Register of Deeds fee for administering the oaths is $10.00.

Step 5: Order your notary supplies from Notary Rotary, Inc.

The state of North Carolina requires all notaries public to purchase a North Carolina Notary seal or North Carolina notary stamp to authenticate their notarial acts. There is no legal requirement for a North Carolina notary public to use a journal to record notarial acts. It is, however, recommended by most to keep one. A North Carolina notary journal can provide records of your notarial acts, in case you ever need them.

Please visit our store for your seal, stamp, journal, and any other supplies you may need, by clicking on the following link: North Carolina Notary Supplies.  Enter the store to view all North Carolina notary supplies offered by Notary Rotary. Follow the onscreen instructions through the order process and your order will ship as soon as we are able to process it, usually within 2-3 days.

When you receive your supplies you will be prepared to take up the duties and responsibilities of a North Carolina notary public.

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