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Become a Michigan Notary

Abbreviation: MI   |   26th State   |   Statehood: January 26, 1837   |  
Eligibility:
To become a Michigan notary you must meet all of the requirements listed below:

  • Be 18 years old or older
  • Be a resident of the state of Michigan or maintains a principal place of business in Michigan
  • Be a U.S. citizen or possess proof of legal presence
  • Read and write the English language
  • Be free of any felony convictions within the past 10 years
  • Have not been convicted of 2 or more misdemeanor offenses or 3 or more misdemeanor offenses involving a violation of the Michigan Notary Public Act within a 5-year period
  • For a non-resident, demonstrates that his or her principal place of business is located in the county in which he or she requests appointment
 
Qualification:
In order to receive a Michigan notary public commission, a person must:

  • Meet the eligibility requirements
  • Properly complete and submit a notary application form to the county clerk where the applicant resides or where the non-resident maintains a place of business with a $10,000 bond, take the oath of office, and pay a filing fee of $10
  • After the application is completed with the county clerk, the person mails the applicaton to the Michigan Department of State Office of the Great Seal within 90 days from the date of the oath with a filing fee of $10. Click here to download the application form -
http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7-127-1638_8736---,00.html
 
Non-Residents Michigan Notary:
Permitted. Non-residents must maintain a place of business in the county of appointment. A person who does not reside in the state of Michigan must demonstrates that his or her principal place of business is located in the county in which he or she requests appointment and indicate that he or she is engaged in an activity in which he or she is likely to be required to perform notarial acts.
 
Michigan Notary Bond:
Required. A $10,000 bond is required for new and renewing notaries. The bond must be filed at the office of the county clerk in the county where the notary will be appointed. Licensed attorneys in the State of Michigan are not required to file a surety bond with the county clerk as of April 1, 2007; however, the State Bar number must be included on the application for verification.
 
Notary Errors & Omissions Insurance:
Optional. A notary public is liable to any person for damages that result from the misconduct of the notary public. The American Association of Notaries strongly recommend Michigan notaries public to insure themselves against claims of negligence through the purchase of a Notary Errors and Omissions insurance.
 
Filing Fee:
A $10 state filing fee is required for new notary applications.
 
Michigan Notary Term:
A 6 to 7-year period ending on the notary’s birthday. The term is not less than 6 or more than 7 years from the date of appointment.
 
Jurisdiction:
Statewide.
 
Appointment:
Secretary of State
Michigan Department of State
Office of the Great Seal
7064 Crowner Blvd
Lansing, MI 48918-1750
(888) 767-6424
http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7-127-1638_8736---,00.html
 
Notary Commission Renewal:
A notary may apply 60 days before the expiration of his or her current commission by completing a new application form. In the case of an attorney appointed notary public, the Office of the Great Seal will send the notary at least 90 days a reappointment application, which has to be certified by the state bar of Michigan that the notary is still a member in good standing.
 
Education/Testing:
Before performing a notarial act, Michigan notaries are required to read the current statutes that regulate notarial acts.
 
Michigan Notary Stamp/Notary Seal:
None Required. A notary public may use a stamp that includes: notary’s commission name; “Notary Public, State of Michigan, County of ______”; “My commission expires________”; and “Acting in the County of _______.” An embosser alone or any other method that cannot be reproduced shall not be used.

 
Record Book:
None Required. The Office of the Great Seal and the American Association of Notaries strongly recommend that Michigan notaries maintain a notary journal of every notarial act they perform for their records and protection from liability. Michigan notaries are required to maintain their notary journal for at least 5 years. Notaries are required to provide copies of their notarial records upon the request of the Office of the Great Seal. For Michigan notary supplies, contact the American Association of Notaries by calling (800) 721-2663 or visiting our website at www.usnotaries.com.
 
Notary Fees:
Notary fees are set by state law. A notary public must either conspicuously display a sign or expressly advise a person concerning the fee amount to be charged for a notarial act before the notary performs the act. A notary is allowed to charge for each notarial act, but not more than:

  • Acknowledgments $10.00
  • Oaths and affirmations $10.00
  • Witness or attest a signature $10
 
Authority:
Michigan notary has the authority to:

  • Take acknowledgments
  • Administer oaths or affirmations
  • Witness or attest to a signature
 
Address Change:
Required. A change in the notary public’s residence or business address must be reported to the Office of the Great Seal and the county clerk of the notary’s appointment by submitting a Michigan Notary Public Request for Duplicate/Notice of Change form. The new residence address must match what is on file with the Michigan Department of State as listed on the driver’s license or personal identification card. Click here to download the Request for Duplicate/Notice of Change form http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7-127-1638_8736---,00.html .
 
Name Change:
Required. A change in the notary public’s name must be reported to the Office of the Great Seal and the county clerk of the notary’s appointment by submitting a Michigan Notary Public Request for Duplicate/Notice of Change form. The Office of the Great Seal will notify the county clerk when a corrected commission is issued.The name must match what is on file with the Michigan Department of State as listed on the driver’s license or personal identification card. Click here to download the Request for Duplicate/Notice of Change form http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7-127-1638_8736---,00.html .
 
Death/Resignation/Removal:
If the notary is convicted of a felony, the notary commission is automatically revoked on the date of conviction.
 
Prohibited Acts:
A notary public may not:

  • Claim to have powers, qualifications, rights, or privileges that the office of notary public does not provide, including the power to counsel on immigration matters
  • Use any term that implies that the notary is an attorney
  • Give legal advice, explain legal documents, or aid an individual in completing legal or immigration forms
  • Use the term “notario publico” or any equivalent non-English term to advertise notary services
  • Overcharge for notary public services
  • Notarize a document without the signer being in the notary’s presence
  • Notarize his or her own signature
  • Take his or her own deposition or affidavit
  • Notarize a document if he or she is named in the transaction or has a direct financial or beneficial interest in the transaction
  • Sign a notarial certificate under any other name than the one under which the notary was commissioned
  • Certify or notarize that a record is an original or a true copy of another record
  • Notarize for a family member
  • Decide what type of notarial act a document requires
  • Notarize a document that contains blank spaces
 
Criminal Offense:
A violation of the Michigan Notary Public Act is a misdemeanor. Upon conviction, a person can be fined up to $5,000 or by imprisonment for not more than 1 year, or both. A notary public who knowingly violates the Michigan Notary Public Act when notarizing any document relating to an interest in real property or a mortgage transaction, a felony punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000 or by imprisonment for not more than 4 years, or both.
 
Notarial Certificates:
Click here to view your state's notarial certificates.

Revised: August 2013

Notary bonds and errors and omissions insurance policies provided by this insurance agency, American Association of Notaries, Inc., are underwritten by Western Surety Company, Universal Surety of America, or Surety Bonding Company of America, which are subsidiaries of CNA Surety. American Association of Notaries is owned by Kal Tabbara, a licensed insurance agent.