How to Become a Notary in Wyoming
The Wyoming Notary Process:
Are you interested in becoming a Wyoming notary? Are you interested in generating extra income, starting your own Wyoming notary business, adding a notary title to your resume, or helping people in your community? The State of Wyoming appoints notaries to serve the public as unbiased impartial witnesses to document signing. Becoming a notary in Wyoming is a straightforward process, and as long as you meet the eligibility requirements listed below, you can apply to become a Wyoming notary. The American Association of Notaries has been helping individuals become notaries since 1994.
This guide will help you understand:
- Who can become a Wyoming notary
- The process to become a Wyoming notary
- Basic Wyoming notarial duties
What are the qualifications to become a Wyoming notary?
To become a Wyoming notary public, a notary applicant must meet the following requirements:
- Be at least 18 years of age.
- Be a resident of the State of Wyoming and the county from which the applicant is making application.
- Be able to read and write the English language.
- Have not been convicted of a felony, unless the felony conviction has been pardoned, reversed, or annulled and all rights have been restored under WS 7-13-105(a).
What is the process to become a Wyoming notary?
To become a Wyoming notary public and receive a Wyoming notary public commission, a notary applicant must:
- Meet the eligibility requirements provided in the previous section.
- Complete and sign the Notary Application/Renewal Form on a computer and print it.
- Mail the application and a $30 fee (check/money order) to the Secretary of State.
- After receipt of the notification from the Secretary of State, purchase a $500 surety bond.
- Record the oath of office and bond with the county clerk’s office in the county where the applicant resides within sixty days from the beginning date of the commission. (If the bond is not filed in a timely manner, the notary will be disqualified.)
- Upon filing the oath of office and bond with the county clerk’s office, the county clerk releases the notary public commission issued by the Secretary of State to the applicant.
- Purchase an official seal/stamp (ink or embossed) upon receiving the commission certificate.
Can a non-resident become a notary in Wyoming?
No. An individual who is not a resident of Wyoming does not qualify for a Wyoming notary public commission. However, a Montana notary public may perform certain notarial acts in Wyoming, and those acts have the same effect under Wyoming law as if they were performed by a Wyoming notary public if that contiguous state grants Wyoming notaries similar notarial authority within that state. Wyoming only shares “reciprocity” with Montana, no other states.
How much does it cost to become a notary in Wyoming?
A Wyoming notary applicant’s expenses may include the cost for the following: (1) a $30 filing fee to process the application for appointment or reappointment as a notary public; (2) a $500 surety bond; (3) a $14 filing fee to record the notary’s surety bond and oath; (4) an official seal; (5) a journal if the notary wishes to maintain one as recommended by the Wyoming Secretary of State; and (6) an E&O insurance policy if a notary wishes to purchase one for his or her own personal protection against liability.
How do I renew my Wyoming notary commission?
Wyoming notaries public may re-apply for a new commission beginning six weeks prior to their current commission expiration dates. Notaries applying for reappointment as notaries public must follow the same commissioning procedures as they did when initially applying for appointment as a notary public, which include: (1) completing the prescribed application form; (2) submitting a $30 filing fee; and (3) recording a $500 bond with the county clerk. When applying for reappointment, notaries must not submit their renewal applications more than six weeks prior to their current commission expiration dates. The Secretary of State does not send out renewal reminders/applications notices. To initiate the renewing commissioning process, download the Notary Application/Renewal Form or visit the Secretary of State’s website.
Note: A notary public who performs any notarial act after the expiration of his or her term of office knowing that the commission term has expired shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars ($500.00) nor less than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) (WS §32-1-109).
Are there any exams or notary courses required to become a Wyoming notary public or to renew my Wyoming notary public commission?
No. Renewing notaries and new applicants seeking appointments as notaries public are not required to take and pass any notary course of study or examination to be appointed and commissioned as Wyoming notaries public. However, the Secretary of State offers new applicants seeking appointment as notaries public a voluntary, online “self-help” test complete with correct answers. New applicants are not required to send their test results with their notary applications to the Secretary of State. To take the “self-help” test, go to: http://soswy.state.wy.us/Services/AdditionalNotaryInfo.aspx.
Can I perform electronic notarization in Wyoming?
Yes. The Wyoming Legislature enacted the “Uniform Electronic Transactions Act” (Title 40, Chapter 21, Sections 40-21-101 through 40-21-119), which authorizes Wyoming notaries to obtain an electronic signature and electronic seal to notarize electronic documents in the physical presence of the individual seeking the notarization. First and foremost, the Wyoming notary statutes stipulate that the principal must physically appear before the notary public at the time of the notarial act. This means the principal and the notary are physically close enough to see, hear, communicate, and give identification credentials to each other without reliance on an electronic device such as a telephone, computer, video camera, or video conferences during the entire performance of the notarial act. All the same rules, standards, practices, and regulations that apply to a traditional paper notarization also apply to an electronically signed document including, but not limited to, personal appearance before the notary public. In addition, this act specifies that if a law requires that a signature be notarized, the requirement is satisfied with respect to an electronic signature if an electronic record includes, in addition to the electronic signature to be notarized, the electronic signature of a notary public together with all other information required to be included in a notarization by other applicable law. Therefore, the notary’s electronic seal must reproduce the statutory required elements of the notary’s official seal. Moreover, the liability, sanctions, and remedies for improper performance of electronic notarizations are the same under the state notary laws for the improper performance of notarial acts performed by traditional notaries public. The State of Wyoming has not enacted/adopted statutes, rules, and/or procedures for electronic notarizations.
Can I perform remote (online) notarizations in Wyoming?
No. The State of Wyoming has not enacted/adopted notary statutes, regulations, or established standards and procedures for remote online notarizations. The Wyoming notary statute requires that a principal must personally appear before a Wyoming notary public (face-to-face) for any notarial act, such as an acknowledgment or jurat, to be performed in that signer’s name. This means that the principal and the notary public are physically close enough to see each other, communicate, and share identification credentials with one another without the use of electronic devices such as telephones, computers, video cameras, or video conferences during the entire performance of the notarial act. Web-based platforms that purport to allow a person to submit copies of identification over the Internet and to use a webcam in lieu of a personal appearance in front of a notary public (e.g., appearance via webcam) do not meet the statutory requirements for notarizations by Wyoming notaries. The Wyoming notary statute does not authorize a notary public to witness an act by means of communication technology-live, two-way, audio-visual transmission, or other electronic means where the person making the act is at a physical location different from the notary public or otherwise not in the physical presence of the notary public for the performance of the notarial act or online notarization. Therefore, online webcam notarizations are invalid and illegal activities for Wyoming notaries public.
How long is the term of a notary public commission in Wyoming?
The term of office for a Wyoming notary public is four years commencing on the date specified on the notary public commission. However, a notary’s commission may be rendered void: (1) by resignation; (2) by death; (3) by revocation; (4) when a notary public is no longer a resident of Wyoming; (5) when a notary is convicted of a felony; or (6) when a notary loses his or her capacity to read and write English.
Is a Wyoming notary bond required to become a notary in Wyoming?
Yes. A surety bond in the amount of $500 is required for all renewing notaries and new applicants seeking appointments as notaries public. The bond must be executed by the applicant and two sureties must be approved by the county clerk or by a surety company licensed in Wyoming. The bond shall be conditioned upon a notary’s faithful performance of all notarial acts in accordance with the state notary statute during the course of the notary’s four-year commission term. The new applicant and/or renewing notary must file a surety bond with the county clerk in the county in which the notary resides within sixty days after the notary public commission becomes effective. Upon the filing of the oath and bond, the county clerk releases the notarial commission to the notary and the county clerk sends a written notice of qualification to the Secretary of State. Upon cancellation of a notary bond by a surety as a result of claims paid by the surety to persons injured as a result of the notary’s negligence or misconduct, the Secretary of State must notify the notary by certified mail return receipt requested that the notary’s commission shall be revoked unless twenty days after the notary receives the notice the notary files proof with the Secretary of State that he or she has secured another $500 bond (WS §32-1-104).
Do I need a Wyoming notary errors and omission insurance?
An errors and omissions insurance policy is optional in Wyoming. The American Association of Notaries strongly recommends that Wyoming notaries obtain errors and omissions insurance 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 type of loss to the public or from a client who sues a notary public for recovery. An E&O policy customarily covers legal fees and damages based on the coverage a Wyoming notary selects.
Where can I perform notarial acts in Wyoming?
A Wyoming notary public has statewide jurisdiction and may perform notarial acts in any county within the geographic borders of the State of Wyoming. A Wyoming notary public may administer oaths or proofs of acknowledgments in Montana (a contiguous state) if Wyoming grants Montana notaries similar authority to perform notarial acts within Wyoming. Likewise, a Montana notary may perform the administration of an oath or proof of acknowledgment in Wyoming with the same effect under Wyoming law as if a Wyoming notary had performed the notarial acts (WS §32-1-105[d]). The States of Montana and Wyoming recognize each other’s notarial officer’s authority. Wyoming only shares “reciprocity” with Montana, no other states.
Who appoints Wyoming notaries public?
The Wyoming Secretary of State appoints notaries public, administers the commissioning process, and maintains an electronic database of active notaries. To contact the Secretary of State, use the following information:
Wyoming Secretary of State
State Capitol Building
200 West 24th Street
Cheyenne, WY 82002-0020
Do I need to purchase a notary stamp in Wyoming?
Yes. The Wyoming notary statute requires each notary public to use either a rubber stamp or an embossed seal to authenticate all his or her official acts. Section 32-1-106 of the Wyoming Statutes provides the legal specifications regarding the layout and the information required on all official stamps or embosser seals.
Dimensions: The official seal must conform to the following requirements: (a) be either circular and not over two inches in diameter or rectangular and not more than three-fourths of an inch in width by two and one-half inches in length; (b) have a serrated or milled edge border; and (c) be legible and capable of being photographically reproduced.
Required Elements: The official seal must clearly show, when embossed, stamped, impressed or affixed to a document the following elements:
- The notary public’s name
- The words “Notary Public”
- The name of the county wherein the notary resides
- The word “Wyoming”
- Commission expiration date—Optional (WS §34-26-101[b][xix])
Note: If the notary public changes his or her county of residence to a different county than that shown on the official seal, the notary must purchase a new official seal that includes the new county.
Is a notary journal required in Wyoming?
No. The Wyoming notary statute does not require notaries public to record their notarial acts performed in a journal. The Secretary of State recommends that Wyoming notaries record their official acts in a journal in the event they need to recall the specifics of a particular notarization. While a journal is not required by state notary statute, the American Association of Notaries also recommends that Wyoming notaries maintain a permanent, paper-bound journal with numbered pages to create and preserve a chronological record of every notarial act they performed as a protective measure against allegations of fraudulent notarial acts and official misconduct. The notaries in Wyoming may find that maintaining a notary journal can be an essential notarial tool in the performance of their notarial acts and that a journal may one day be imperative for their protection against liability. For Wyoming notary supplies, visit the American Association of Notaries website at www.usnotaries.com, call (800) 721-2663, or click here.
How much can a Wyoming notary charge for performing notarial acts?
The Wyoming notary fees are set by state notary statute (WS §34-26-302a). The maximum allowable fees a Wyoming notary public may charge for notarial acts are listed below:
- For taking an acknowledgment - $5 per signature
- For administering an oath or affirmation without a signature - $5 per person
- For witnessing or attesting a signature - $5 per signature
- For jurats - $5 per signature
- For certifying or attesting a copy - $5 per page certified
- For taking a verification upon oath or affirmation - $5 per certificate
- For noting a protest of a negotiable instrument - $5 per protest
Note: A notarial officer may charge a travel fee when traveling to perform a notarial act if: (1) the notarial officer and the person requesting the notarial act agrees upon the travel fee in advance of the travel; (2) the notarial officer explains to the person requesting the notarial act that (a) the travel fee is separate from the notarial fee, if any, and (b) neither is specified nor mandated by law (WS §34-26-302[b]).
What notarial acts can a Wyoming notary public perform?
A Wyoming notary public is authorized to perform the following notarial acts (WS §34-26-101[b][iii]):
- Taking an acknowledgment
- Administering an oath and affirmation
- Taking a verification upon oath or affirmation
- Performing a jurat
- Witnessing or attesting a signature
- Certifying or attesting a copy
- Noting a protest of a negotiable instrument
- Performing verifications of fact (WS §34-26-101[b][xx])
- Performing other acts so authorized by the laws of this state
How do I update my address for my Wyoming notary commission?
The Wyoming notary statute requires a Wyoming notary public who moves out of the county in which the notary was originally commissioned to procure a new notary commission for the new county of residence if the notary wishes to continue being a notary public (WS §32-1-101[d]). When a notary moves to a different county during his or her commission term, the notary’s commission is automatically voided and is no longer valid. After applying for a new commission and upon approval, the notary public must purchase a new notary seal with the new county of residence. If a notary public only changes his or her residence or mailing address within the county where he or she is commissioned, the notary may notify the Secretary of State of the change of address and continue to perform notarial acts. The notary must list his or her current address on the next application for notary public when he or she re-applies upon the expiration of the current commission. To apply for a new notary commission, download the Notary Application/Renewal Form or visit the Secretary of State’s website at http://soswy.state.wy.us/Services/NotariesName.aspx.
Do I have to change my name on my notary commission in Wyoming?
When a Wyoming notary public lawfully changes his or her name during the term of his or her commission, the notary’s options are: (1) apply for a new commission with the new name, and pay $30; (2) continue to operate as a notary public under the old name; or (3) file a certified copy of the court order, divorce decree, or certificate of marriage showing the new name change with the Secretary of State and the county clerk and pay a $3 fee to the Secretary of State, plus a fee to the county clerk. Filing the certified documents with the Secretary of State and the county clerk allows a notary public to add the new name after the notary’s present last name as it appears on the notary’s commission. The notary public does not need to obtain a new notary seal, but must add the new last name after the present name when performing notarial acts. If the notary does nothing, the notary can simply continue to use the last name that appears on the notary’s commission until the commission expires (WS §32-1-102). To apply for a new notary commission, download the Notary Application/Renewal Form or visit the Secretary of State’s website at http://soswy.state.wy.us/Services/NotariesName.aspx.
Revised: January 2020
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 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 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.