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How to Become an Illinois Notary

by American Association of Notaries
Compared to other states, Illinois State has few eligibility requirements to become an Illinois notary. Any Illinois resident 18 years of age or older with no felony convictions is eligible to apply to become an Illinois notary. The information listed below will guide you step-by-step on how to become an Illinois notary.

How do I become a notary in the state of Illinois?

To become an Illinois notary, a notary applicant must:

1. Be 18 years of age or older
2. Live or work (thirty days or more) in the state of Illinois
3. Be a citizen or a permanent resident of the United States
4. Not have had a notary public appointment revoked or suspended in the last ten years
5. Be able to read, write, and understand the English language
6. Have no felony convictions

If you meet the above qualifications you can apply to become a notary by:

1. Purchasing a four-year, $5,000 Illinois notary bond
2. Completing an application
3. Mailing the completed and notarized Illinois notary application, the four-year, $5,000 Illinois notary bond, a copy of your driver's license, and the required appointment fee to the Secretary of State.
4. Picking up your Illinois notary public commission certificate from your County Clerk's Office and paying the filing fee or paying the filing and mailing fee to have your commission certificate mailed to you.

How can I start the Illinois notary application process to become an Illinois notary?

To become a Illinois notary, please follow the instructions listed on the previous section on "How to become a Illinois notary". Click here for more information on how to become a Illinois notary, and read our Illinois law section. More information can found at the Illinois Secretary of State's website.

How do I renew my Illinois notary commission?

Renewing your Illinois notary commission is no different than the application process for a new Illinois notary applicant. You must follow the same steps listed in the previous question, purchase the Illinois notary bond, and mail the notarized application, notary bond, a copy of your driver's license, and appointment fee to the Secretary of State. To purchase the 4-Year $5,000 Illinois notary bond to renew your notary commission, please visit our website: http://www.illinoisnotary.com/commission.asp

When can I renew my Illinois notary commission?

You can renew your Illinois notary public commission within sixty days before your commission expiration date.

How much does it cost to become an Illinois Notary?

To become an Illinois notary, you must purchase a four-year, $5,000 Illinois notary bond. The cost of the bond is only $30.00. You can purchase an Illinois notary bond at the American Association of Notaries' website at http://www.illinoisnotary.com/how-to-become-an-illinois-notary/. To become an Illinois notary, you must also pay the $10.00 appointment fee when mailing the required documents to the Secretary of State. After receiving the mailed in notification from the County Clerk's Office to pick up your commission certificate a $5.00 fee will be required to have your appointment recorded in person by the County Clerk or a $10.00 to have it completed by mail. You also need an Illinois notary stamp (prices vary on the notary stamp item you select). Please visit http://www.illinoisnotary.com/stamps.asp for notary stamps and supplies options.

How long does it take to become an Illinois notary public?

If your application is completed correctly, it usually takes about three to four weeks for the Illinois Secretary of State to approve the application and mail your Illinois commission certificate to your County Clerk's Office. You're not officially a notary public until you have your commission recorded by your County Clerk.

How long does an Illinois notary commission last?

An Illinois notary terms lasts for four years. Terms for non resident applicants are only for one year. To verify when your term begins and ends, you'll have to look at the effective and expiration dates of the Illinois notary public commission certificate you received from the County Clerk's Office. To continue performing notarial acts as an Illinois notary after your current expiration date, you'll have to renew your commission before your notary term expires. Please Click Here to renew your commission.

Where do I purchase the four-year, $5,000 Illinois notary bond?

The Illinois notary bond can be purchased online at http://www.illinoisnotary.com/how-to-become-an-illinois-notary/. The cost for the four-year, $5,000 Illinois notary bond is $30.00. Once you place your order on our website, we will email you the bond and application within one business day with instructions for completing the application process.

Why do I need an Illinois notary bond?

The State of Illinois requires all Illinois notary applicants to purchase the Illinois notary bond to protect the public from any errors and omissions the notary may commit.

Does the Illinois notary bond protect me if I get sued?

No. An Illinois errors and omissions policy (E&O) will help protect the notary in the event of any unintentional errors or omissions.

Do I need to purchase an Illinois notary errors and omissions policy (E&O)?

The Illinois notary errors and omissions insurance policy is optional but highly recommended. It is very affordable and covers you even if a claim is invalid. We offer E&O policies at http://www.illinoisnotary.com/eo.asp. Please note our four-year, $5,000 Illinois notary bond includes a four-year, $5,000 E&O policy at no additional charge.

Do I need to purchase an Illinois notary stamp? What notary supplies do I need?

When becoming an Illinois notary, in order to perform notarial acts in the state of Illinois, you need to buy, at a minimum, an Illinois notary stamp. A notary record book, sometimes called a journal, is not required by the State of Illinois, but we recommend all notaries record every notarial act performed. An Illinois notary stamp must meet the following requirements:

1. Be a rubber stamp type
2. Use black ink that can appear on copies
3. Be rectangular in shape
4. Include a serrated or milled edge border
4. Be no larger than 1" x 2 1/2"
5. Contain the notary's name as it appears on the commission certificate
6. Include the words "official seal, "notary public," and "state of Illinois"
8. Include the words "My commission expires" with the notary's expiration date

How do I order an Illinois notary stamp and record book?

Please go to http://www.illinoisnotary.com/stamps.asp to order your Illinois notary supplies. All of our Illinois notary stamps and Illinois notary supplies come with a life-time replacement guarantee, are made in-house, and are shipped in one business day.

Do I need to send you my Illinois notary commission certificate?

Yes. Please fax or email us your commission certificate so we can prepare your Illinois notary supplies (if purchased).

How can I train to become an Illinois notary?

The Secretary of State's website has an Illinois Notary Public Reference Handbook available for download at http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/indexpub.html#notary. The handbook includes valuable information about performing notarial acts when you become a notary.

Click Here to learn more about how to become an Illinois notary public.
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Legal disclaimer: The American Association of Notaries seeks to provide timely articles for notaries to assist them with information and ideas for managing their notary businesses, enhancing their notary educations, and securing their notary supplies but makes no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained . Information in this article is not intended as legal advice. We are not attorneys. We do not pretend to be attorneys. Though we will sometimes provide information regarding federal laws and statutes and the laws and statutes of each state, we have gathered the information from a variety of sources. We do not warrant the information gathered from those sources. It is your responsibility to know the appropriate laws governing your state. Notaries are advised to seek the advice of an attorney in their state if they have legal questions about how to notarize.
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