How to Become a Notary in Nebraska
Guide to become a notary public in Nebraska:
Are you interested in becoming a Nebraska notary? Are you interested in generating extra income, starting your own Nebraska notary business, adding a notary title to your resume, or helping people in your community? The State of Nebraska appoints notaries to serve the public as unbiased impartial witnesses to document signing. Becoming a notary in Nebraska is a straightforward process, and as long as you meet the eligibility requirements listed below, you can apply to become a Nebraska notary. The America Association of Notaries has been helping individuals become notaries since 1994.
This Nebraska notary guide will help you understand:
- Who can become a notary in Nebraska
- How to become a notary in Nebraska
- The basic duties of a notary in Nebraska
Who can become a notary public in Nebraska?
To become a Nebraska notary public, a notary applicant must meet the following requirements:
- Be at least 19 years old.
- Be a resident of Nebraska or a person who resides in a state that borders Nebraska and is employed in or has a regular place of work or business in Nebraska.
- Not have been convicted of a felony or crime involving fraud or dishonesty within the previous five years.
How to become a notary public in Nebraska?
To become a notary in Nebraska, a notary applicant must:
1. Meet the eligibility requirements provided in the previous section.
2. Download the Initial Application for Notary Commission, United States Citizenship Attestation, and Evidence of Employment in Nebraska (only for non-resident applicants) forms from the Secretary of State’s website.
3. Purchase a $15,000 notary bond from a full-service insurance/bonding agency.
4. Answer all of questions on the downloaded forms.
5. Have the notary application and evidence of employment (if applicable) forms notarized.
6. Mail the notary application with the following items:
- A $15,000 notary bond
- The United States Citizenship Attestation Form
- A $30 non-refundable application fee (payable to: Nebraska Secretary of State or Notary Division)
- The Evidence of Employment in Nebraska Form (non-residents only).
7. Complete and return the notary test that is emailed or mailed from the Secretary of State’s Office. If the applicant passes the notary test with an 85% score or better, the Nebraska Secretary of State will email or mail the notary commission certificate. Failure to pass the notary test will result in the applicant having to wait thirty days from the date of the notice to reapply. The applicant must then:
- submit a new notary application and another non-refundable $30 application fee and
- take a second notary test.
Applications and all other required documents must be mailed to the address specified on the notary application form. All application forms can be found on the main notary page of the Nebraska Secretary of State’s website.
How do I renew my notary commission in Nebraska?
A Nebraska notary public may apply for reappointment as a general notary public within thirty days prior to their current notary commission expiration date. A notary public must complete a renewal notary application and follow the same application process and procedures as the initial application for appointment as a general notary public. Renewing notaries are not required to retake the notary test.
The following must be mailed along with the notary application:
- The $30 renewal fee
- The $15,000 notary bond
- The U.S. Citizenship Attestation Form
- The Evidence of Employment Form (non-residents only)
A renewal notary application that is received after the notary’s commission expiration date will be considered and processed in the same manner as a new notary application for such commission as a general notary public (NRS §64-104). Such process would require the renewing notary to pass the take-home examination again. All renewal application materials can be found on the Secretary of State’s main notary page.
Who appoints notaries in Nebraska?
The Nebraska Secretary of State receives applications for appointment and reappointment as a general notary public, electronic notary public, and online notary public and administers the commissioning process for all these commissions. To contact the Nebraska Secretary of State, use the following information:
Nebraska Secretary of State
Business Services Division
1201 N. Street, Suite 120
Lincoln, NE 68508
PO Box 95104
Lincoln, NE 68509-5104
Telephone: (402) 471-2558
Fax: (402) 471-4429
Can a non-resident of Nebraska apply for a commission as a notary public?
Yes. A non-resident may apply to become a Nebraska notary public if the applicant meets the following requirements (NRS §64-101 and 433 NAC 6.004.05):
- Be employed in or have a regular place of work or business in Nebraska.
- Satisfy the same qualifications as Nebraska residents, setting aside the residency requirements.
To Apply for a non-resident notary commission in Nebraska:
1. Download the Initial Application for Notary Commission, United States Citizenship Attestation, and Evidence of Employment in Nebraska forms from the Secretary of State’s website.
2. Purchase a $15,000 notary bond from a full-service insurance/bonding agency.
3. Answer all of questions on the downloaded forms.
4. Have the notary application and evidence of employment forms notarized.
5. Mail the notary application with the following items:
- A $15,000 notary bond
- The United States Citizenship Attestation Form
- A $30 non-refundable application fee (payable to: Nebraska Secretary of State or Notary Division)
- The Evidence of Employment in Nebraska Form
6. Complete and return the notary test that is emailed or mailed from the Secretary of State’s Office.
A non-resident Nebraska notary must relinquish his or her notary public commission if the non-resident notary is terminated from a regular place of work or business in Nebraska by returning the commission certificate and notary seal to the Nebraska Secretary of State.
How long is a notary public's commission term in Nebraska?
The commission term of a Nebraska notary public is four years commencing with the date specified in the notary public commission. However, a notary’s commission may be rendered void:
- By resignation, death, or revocation.
- When a notary public is no longer a resident of Nebraska during the notary’s commission term.
- When a non-resident notary ceases to have a regular place of work or business in Nebraska.
- When a notary public has been convicted of a felony or crime involving fraud or dishonesty.
Is notary training or an exam required to become a notary or to renew a notary commission in Nebraska?
Yes. All new notary applicants seeking an appointment as a general notary public are required to pass the written take-home notary test. The notary test is emailed or mailed from the Secretary of State’s Office to the notary applicant’s address provided on the notary application submitted to the State.
The notary test consists of questions relating to laws, procedures, and ethics, and it is intended to determine whether the applicant has the necessary knowledge, experience, and competency to engage in and perform the duties of a notary public.
The written examination will be an open resources test sent to the applicant upon receipt of the $30.00 application fee and a completed notary application. An applicant must score 85% or better to pass the exam. If a notary applicant fails the examination, the applicant can reapply after waiting thirty days from the date on the failure notice. The applicant will need to complete a new notary application, pay another $30 application fee, and take a second notary test. An applicant who fails the examination three times will be considered incompetent to be receive a notary public commission in the state of Nebraska and will not be eligible to take the exam again.
How much does it cost to become a notary public in Nebraska?
A Nebraska notary applicant’s expenses may include the following:
- A $30 notary application fee.
- The cost for a $15,000 notary bond.
- The cost of a Nebraska notary stamp.
- The cost of a Nebraska notary journal if the notary wishes to comply with the recommendations of the Nebraska Secretary of State to record all notarial acts in a journal.
- The fee for an E&O insurance policy if a notary wishes to purchase one for his or her personal protection against liability.
Do I need a notary errors and omissions (E&O) insurance policy to become a notary in Nebraska?
No. An errors and omissions insurance policy is optional in Nebraska. It is not mandatory to have E&O insurance when applying for appointment or reappointment as a general notary public. However, the American Association of Notaries strongly recommends that Nebraska notaries public obtain an errors and omissions insurance policy for their personal protection against liability. Errors and omissions insurance is designed to protect notaries from liability against unintentional notarial mistakes or omissions that result in financial or other types of loss to the public or from a client who sues for recovery. An E&O policy customarily covers legal fees and damages based on the coverage a Nebraska notary selects.
Do I need a notary bond to become a notary in Nebraska?
Yes. A notary bond in the amount of $15,000 is required for all new notary applicants seeking an appointment as a general notary public and for renewing notaries public.
Do I need to order a notary stamp in Nebraska?
Yes. The Nebraska notary statute requires all notaries public to authenticate all official acts with a Nebraska notary stamp (NRS §64-210). Section 64-210 does not provide the legal specifications regarding the layout, ink color, shape, design, and measurements required on all official ink stamp seals.
Required Elements: The notary stamp of a Nebraska notary public must include the following (NRS §64-210):
- The words "State of Nebraska”
- The words “General Notary” or “General Notarial”
- The name of the notary public as commissioned
- The notary’s commission expiration date
A notary must obtain a new official ink stamp seal each time the commission is renewed, and the new seal must include the new commission date. The official stamp seal should be secured and only accessible to the notary public regardless of whether or not another business or entity paid the notary application fee, bond, or seal (Title 433 Chapter 6 NAC 6.002.02).
How much can a Nebraska notary public charge for performing notarial acts?
Nebraska notary fees are set by rule adopted by the Nebraska Secretary of State (433 NAC 6.008.04). The maximum allowable fees that a Nebraska notary public may charge for notarial acts are listed below:
- For taking an acknowledgment - $5.00
- For administering an oath or affirmation - $2.00
- Verifications upon an oath or affirmation- $2.00
- For taking affidavits and seal -$2.00
- For each protest - $1.00; for recording the same - $2.00
- For each notice of protest - $2.00
- For each certificate and seal - $5.00
Note: For each mile traveled in serving a notice of protest, a notary public may charge at the rate established by the State Department of Administrative Services.
Is a notary journal required in Nebraska?
No. The Nebraska notary statute does not require Nebraska notaries public to record all their notarial acts performed in a journal. While a Nebraska notary journal is not required by state notary statute, the Nebraska Secretary of State and the American Association of Notaries highly recommend that Nebraska notaries record their official notarial acts in a journal in the event they need to recall the specifics of a particular notarization or they are legally challenged. The American Association of Notaries also recommends that Nebraska notaries maintain a permanent, paper-bound journal with numbered pages to create and preserve a chronological record of every notarial act performed as a protective measure against allegations of fraudulent notarial acts and official misconduct. To assist Nebraska notaries in recording their official acts, the Secretary of State has provided an example journal on its website: Notary Journal.
Where can I perform notarial acts in Nebraska?
A Nebraska notary public has statewide jurisdiction and may perform notarial acts in any county anywhere within the geographic borders of Nebraska (NRS §64-102). Likewise, a Nebraska notary public may not perform notarial acts outside of Nebraska.
What notarial acts can a Nebraska notary public perform?
A Nebraska notary public is authorized to perform the following notarial acts (NRS §64-107 and 433 NAC 6.001.07):
- Take proof of execution and acknowledgments of instruments
- Administer oaths and affirmations
- Attest documents
- Take depositions
- Issue summons and command the presence of witnesses for depositions in civil lawsuits (NRS §64-108)
Can I perform electronic notarizations in Nebraska?
Yes. The State of Nebraska enacted the Electronic Notary Public Act, Neb. Rev. Stat. §64-301 through §64-317, which provides rules and regulations pertaining to electronic notaries public. In performing an electronic notarial act, all the following components must be attached to, or logically associated with, the electronic document by the electronic notary public and must be immediately perceptible and reproducible in the electronic document to which the notary public’s electronic signature is attached:
- The electronic notary seal
- The notary public’s electronic signature
- The completed wording of one of the following notarial certificates:
- Verification or proof
- Oath or affirmation
When an electronic notary public performs an electronic notarization, the principal and the electronic notary public must be in each other's physical presence during the entire electronic notarization so that the principal and the electronic notary public can see, hear, communicate with, and give identification documents to each other without the use of electronic devices such as telephones, computers, video cameras, or facsimile machine (Neb. Rev. Stat. §64-105). For more information with regard to Nebraska electronic notaries public, click here.
What is the process to become a Nebraska electronic notary public?
To qualify for registration as an electronic notary public in Nebraska, an applicant will need to (433 NAC 7.003):
- Provide all information needed for registration pursuant to Neb. Rev. Stat. §64-304.
- Hold a valid Nebraska notary public commission.
- Certify that he or she continues to meet the qualifications of a notary public.
- Contract with an electronic notary solution provider approved by the Secretary of State.
- Complete and submit the Electronic Notary Public Registration form.
- Pay the $100 registration fee.
Take the course of instruction and pass the examination administered by the Secretary of State. Provide any other information requested by the Secretary to prove the qualifications of the electronic notary applicant.
Can I perform online notarizations in Nebraska?
Yes. Current Nebraska notaries can register with the Secretary of State’s Office to perform online notarizations. Nebraska Revised Statutes §64-401 et. seq. provides the Online Public Notary Act, which was enacted in 2019 by LB 186 but was not set to become operative until July 1, 2020.
When an online notary public performs an online notarial act, he or she must be physically located in the state of Nebraska. The notary must take reasonable steps to ensure that the communication technology used in an online notarial act is secure and attach their electronic signature and online notary seal to the electronic document. Notably, an online notary cannot be used to meet the notary requirement for wills, codicils, or testamentary trust signings.
The act also requires an online notary to keep a secure electronic record of the electronic documents notarized. For more information with regard to Nebraska online notaries public, click here.
What is the process to become an online notary in Nebraska?
To provide online notary services, you are required to comply with the following:
- Hold an existing notary commission as a traditional notary public.
- Contract with an online notary solution provider approved by the Secretary of State.
- Certify that you continue to meet the qualifications of a Nebraska notary public (§64-101).
- Complete the Online Notary Registration Form and submit it to the Secretary of State.
- Pay the $50 registration fee.
- Take a training course and pass the test administered by the Secretary of State.
- Receive an email from the Secretary of State with your online notary commission certificate if you passed the test.
- Provide a copy of the online notary commission certificate to your online approved solution provider.
The notary public must acquire a computer, webcam, microphone, and secure internet connection. He or she also needs to purchase digital notary supplies, which include an electronic seal, electronic journal, and digital certificate containing his or her electronic signature.
How do I update my address on my Nebraska notary commission?
A notary public must notify the Secretary of State of any change of his or her residential address no later than 45 days after such address change by submitting the Notary Public Request to Change Record form.
Non-resident notaries will also need to complete a new Evidence of Employment form if their Nebraska work address has also changed. If they are no longer employed in Nebraska, they will need to resign.
The notary’s address change form must be notarized by another notary. No fee will be assessed for updating address information.
How do I change my name on my notary commission in Nebraska?
Changing the notary name you are commissioned under is optional. A Nebraska notary public whose name is legally changed during the term of the notary’s commission may continue to act under his or her original notary public commission, seal, and name until the expiration or termination of such commission. The bond given by such notary public shall continue in effect, regardless of such legal change of name, if the notary public uses the name under which the commission is issued (NRS §64-114).
However, a notary public may change the name on his or her notary public commission by submitting to the Secretary of State the following items (433 NAC 6.005.04):
- A completed Change of Signature or Name Application for a Notary Public form. If the name or signature change occurs within thirty days prior to the expiration of the notary public’s commission, the notary public does not need to submit the Change of Signature or Name Application for a Notary Public form but should instead include the name or signature change on his or her renewal application.
- A new bond issued under the new name.
- A $30 fee.
This application is considered a new application and the notary public must meet all the requirements and qualifications for a notary public commission, except that the notary public is not required to take the written examination. Upon receipt of these items, the Secretary of State will assign the notary public a new notary public commission with a new expiration date. Then, the notary must purchase a new notary seal with the new name and the new notary commission expiration date.
Legal disclaimer: The American Association of Notaries makes no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this page. Information on this page 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 this information from various 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 states if they have legal questions about how to perform notarial acts.
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.