How to Become a Notary in New Hampshire
To become a notary in New Hampshire, you must:
- Meet the eligibility requirements detailed in the next section.
- Download, print, and complete the notary public application and the Acknowledgment of Criminal Record Check form from the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s website at https://sos.nh.gov/administration/administration/notary-public/ Print the application and form on two separate pages.
- Have the notary public application endorsed by two New Hampshire notaries public and a person who is registered to vote in New Hampshire.
- Sign the notary public application and Acknowledgement of Criminal Record Check form in the presence of a notary public or justice of the peace.
- Mail the original notary public application and Acknowledgement of Criminal Record Check form to the secretary of state’s office with a $75 fee.
- Wait for your notary application to be approved and to receive your notary public commission, oath of office, Notary Public Manual and Justice of the Peace Manual, and other information from the secretary of state.
- Sign and take your oath of office in the presence of two justices of the peace, two notaries public, or one notary public and one justice of the peace. (Those who sign the oath must also sign your notary public commission.)
- Return the oath of office to the secretary of state as soon as possible.
- Keep the notary public commission.
Who can become a notary public in New Hampshire?
To become a notary in New Hampshire, you must meet the following requirements:
- Be at least eighteen years of age.
- Be a resident of New Hampshire or a resident of an abutting state who is regularly employed or carries on a trade, business, or practice in New Hampshire at the time of applying and is a notary public in that state of residence.
- Not have been convicted of a crime that has not been annulled by a court, other than minor traffic violations.
This New Hampshire notary guide will help you understand the following:
- Who can become a notary in New Hampshire.
- How to become a notary in New Hampshire.
- The basic duties of a notary in New Hampshire.
How do I renew my notary commission in New Hampshire?
The notary renewal application process is the same as the application process to become a notary. A renewal application will be mailed to you approximately twelve weeks prior to your notary commission expiration date. Renewal applications are not available online. Failing to notify the Secretary of State of an address or name change during your commission term will result in you not receiving the renewal application form. Contact the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s Office if you did not receive your reappointment application. The renewal fee is $75.
Who appoints notaries in New Hampshire?
The governor appoints New Hampshire notaries public with the advice and consent of the Executive Council, and the Secretary of State’s Office processes all notary applications for appointment and reappointment, maintains all the records on notaries and authenticates their acts.
The New Hampshire Secretary of State can be contacted at:
New Hampshire Secretary of State's Office
State House, Room 204
107 North Main Street
Concord, NH 03301
Can a non-resident of New Hampshire apply for a commission as a notary public?
Yes. Effective August 4, 2019, a resident of an abutting state may apply to become a notary public in New Hampshire if they are:
- A resident of Maine, Massachusetts, or Vermont
- Regularly employed or carries on a trade, business, or practice in New Hampshire at the time of applying
- A registered notary public in their home state
If a non-resident wishes to apply for a notary commission in New Hampshire, they must provide the following to the Secretary of State’s Office:
- A completed Notary Public Application for Maine, Massachusetts, or Vermont Resident form.
- An Affidavit of Employment form.
- An Acknowledgement of Criminal Record Check form for the state of New Hampshire.
- A criminal history record completed by the Department of Safety in their home state.
- An application fee of $75.
How long is a notary public's commission term in New Hampshire?
The term of office of a New Hampshire notary public is five years from the date of appointment. A notary public cannot notarize documents until they have taken the oath of office (RSA §92:2). A notary’s commission may be terminated:
- By resignation, death, or revocation.
- When the notary ceases to reside in New Hampshire.
- When a non-resident notary ceases to be employed or carry on a trade, business, or practice in New Hampshire.
- When the notary is convicted of a felony.
Is notary training or an exam required to become a notary or to renew a notary commission in New Hampshire?
No. New Hampshire notary statutes do not require any training and/ or notary examination to be commissioned as a notary public in New Hampshire.
How much does it cost to become a notary public in New Hampshire?
To become a notary public in New Hampshire, you must pay the following:
- A $75 application fee.
- A fee to have your notary public application and Acknowledgement of Criminal Record Check form notarized.
Other expenses include the cost of purchasing:
- A New Hampshire notary stamp.
- A New Hampshire notary journal to record all notarial acts.
- An errors and omissions insurance policy to protect yourself if you are sued for unintentional mistakes or if a false claim is filed against you as a notary. (This step is optional.)
- A notary training course to learn how to properly perform your notarial duties as a New Hampshire notary public. (This step is optional.)
Do I need a notary errors and omissions (E&O) insurance policy to become a notary in New Hampshire?
A notary errors and omissions (E&O) insurance policy is optional in New Hampshire and is not required to become a New Hampshire notary public or to renew your notary commission. However, the American Association of Notaries strongly recommends that every New Hampshire notary obtain a notary E&O insurance policy. This insurance protects you from a claim if a client sues you as a notary. A notary E&O policy covers unintentional notarial mistakes and pays for legal fees and damages based on the coverage you select as a New Hampshire notary public.
Do I need a notary bond to become a notary in New Hampshire?
No. New Hampshire does not require a notary bond to become a notary public or to renew your notary public commission.
Note: A notary public is liable to any person for damages that result from his or her negligence, errors, official malfeasance, or omissions. New Hampshire notaries are encouraged to purchase a notary errors and omissions insurance policy to insure themselves against such claims.
Do I need to order a notary stamp in New Hampshire?
Yes. You must purchase a notary stamp or an embossed official seal to perform your notarial duties. Section 455:3(II) of the New Hampshire Revised Statutes Annotated states that all notarial acts performed by a notary public with respect to a record shall be either under an embossed official seal or shall carry the legible imprint of an electronic or rubber official stamp.
Dimensions: The New Hampshire notary statute does not provide the specifications regarding the size, shape, or layout of a rubber official stamp and embossed official seal.
Required Elements: The rubber official stamp must include the following information printed on it:
- The name of the notary public
- The words "Notary Public"
- The words "New Hampshire"
- The expiration date of the notary public’s commission
- If a New Hampshire notary uses an embossed official seal, the notary must also have a separate rubber stamp with the expiration date of the notary’s commission on it
- An embossed official seal must contain the notary’s name and the words “Notary Public” and “New Hampshire”
- All notarial certificates must include the official stamp or seal and the date of expiration of the commission
- The rubber official stamp of a notary public shall be capable of being copied together with the record to which it is affixed or attached or with which it is logically associated
- “While state law permits notaries public to use a rubber stamp, it may not be sufficient for certain purposes. For example, federal passport regulations may require a raised seal. A notary public should consider whether the rubber stamp is sufficient for each type of notarial act. If uncertain, the notary or the person signing should consult with the authority with whom the person signing will file the document. This is particularly important where the person signing will file the document internationally” (Notary Public and Justice of the Peace Manual)
To order a New Hampshire notary stamp, notary seal, complete notary package, and notary supplies, please visit the American Association of Notaries website at https://www.notarypublicstamps.com/notary-stamps/new-hampshire.
How much can a New Hampshire notary public charge for performing notarial acts?
New Hampshire notary fees are set by state notary statute (RSA §455:11). Notaries public shall be entitled to a fee of up to $10 for each oath, witness, service, or certification with the following exceptions:
- For services related to the taking of depositions, the notary public shall be entitled to the same fees as justices are entitled to receive pursuant to RSA §517:19
- No fees shall be allowed for administering and certifying oaths of office of town officers
- For performing notarial acts for a remotely located individual under RSA §456-B:6-a, a notary public shall be entitled to a fee of $25 per act
Is a notary journal required in New Hampshire?
New Hampshire notary statutes do not require New Hampshire notaries public to record their notarial acts in a New Hampshire notary journal except when dealing with a remotely located individual under RSA 456-B:6-a.
While a journal is not required by state notary law for traditional in-person notarizations, the American Association of Notaries highly recommends that you keep a journal to record each notarial act you perform. Maintaining a notary journal can:
- Assist you in recalling your past notarial acts if needed or if the notarization is legally challenged and you are called by a court to testify about a notarial act you previously performed.
- Provide irrefutable evidence that you used reasonable care and standard notarial practices in the execution of the notarial act in question.
- A journal may be created on a tangible medium or in electronic format
- A notary public shall maintain only one journal at a time to chronicle all notarial acts performed regarding tangible records and one or more journals to chronicle all notarial acts performed regarding electronic records
- If a journal is maintained on a tangible medium, it shall be a permanent, bound register with numbered pages
- If a journal is maintained in electronic format, it shall be in a permanent, tamper-evident electronic format complying with the rules of the secretary of state
- The notary public shall retain the journal for ten years after the performance of the last notarial act chronicled in the journal
To order a New Hampshire notary journal, please visit the American Association of Notaries website at https://www.notarypublicstamps.com/record-book/new-hampshire.
Where can I perform notarial acts in New Hampshire?
You may perform notarial acts while you are physically anywhere within the geographic borders of the state of New Hampshire.
What notarial acts can a New Hampshire notary public perform?
A New Hampshire notary public is authorized to perform the following notarial acts (RSA §456-B:I):
- Take acknowledgments
- Administer oaths and affirmations
- Take verifications upon oath or affirmation
- Note protests of negotiable instruments
- Certify or attest copies
- Witness or attest signatures
- Every notary public, in addition to the usual powers of the office, shall have the same powers as a justice of the peace in relation to depositions and the acknowledgment of deeds and other instruments and the administering of oaths [RSA §455:3(I)]
- A New Hampshire notary public must be present for the opening of a safe deposit box for which rent has not been paid and must carry out certain actions (see the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s Notary Public and Justice of the Peace Manual)
Can I perform electronic notarizations in New Hampshire?
Yes. You can perform electronic notarizations in New Hampshire. Read the next section on how to become an electronic notary.
The New Hampshire Uniform Law on Notarial Acts authorizes notaries to perform electronic notarizations. In an electronic notarization, the majority of the steps and procedures of notarization remain the same as for a traditional in-person notarization, but the document, signatures, and notary seal will all be in a digital format.
What is the process to become a New Hampshire electronic notary public?
To become an electronic notary in New Hampshire, you must:
- Hold an existing traditional notary public commission.
- Acquire a digital certificate from an authorized technology provider. Click here for a list of authorized technology providers.
- Download and complete the Electronic/Remote Notarization Notification Form from the website of the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s website.
- Email or mail the form to the New Hampshire Secretary of State.
Can I perform remote online notarizations in New Hampshire?
Yes. Starting on February 6, 2022, New Hampshire notaries public are authorized to perform remote online notarizations pursuant to Senate Bill 134 (2021). You may perform remote notarizations by using real-time audio-video technology that meets minimum technical performance requirements. Before providing this service, you will be required to notify the Secretary of State's Office of the technology services and/ or vendors you will purchase to provide this new service.
How do I become a remote online notary in New Hampshire?
To become a remote online notary, you must:
- Hold an existing traditional notary public commission.
- Contract with a remote notarization technology provider that meets state requirements. Please visit the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s website for a list of authorized technology providers.
- Download and complete the Electronic/ Remote Notarization Notification Form from the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s website.
- Email or mail the Electronic/ Remote Notarization Notification Form to the Secretary of State.
You will need a computer, webcam, microphone, and secure internet connection to perform remote notarizations. You must also obtain digital notary supplies, including an electronic seal, electronic journal, and digital certificate containing the electronic signature.
How do I update my address on my New Hampshire notary commission?
Notify the Secretary of State’s Office whenever you change your address during your notary commission term. If you fail to notify the Secretary of State’s Office of your new address, you will not receive your renewal application form when it comes time to renew your notary commission.
To update your address information, contact the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s Office at (603) 271-3242 or email@example.com
How do I change my name on my notary commission in New Hampshire?
If your name changes while you are commissioned as a New Hampshire notary public, you must notify the Secretary of State’s Office and request a new commission certificate with your new name. The fee for a new commission certificate is $5, payable by cash or check to the Secretary of State’s Office.
To update your notary name and request a new commission certificate, contact the Secretary of State’s Office at 603-271-3242 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Notary Public and Justice of the Peace Manual states, “If the notary public is within six months of the end of his or her five-year commission, the Secretary of State’s Office practice is to permit the notary public to continue to sign official documents using both the old and new names rather than requesting a new commission. For example, if Jane Smith’s name changes to Jane Jones she could sign as Jane (Smith) Jones.”
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.