Back to My Account / Member Center / Q&A

To view the FAQs, please pick a state by selecting one from the dropdown menu above in the header.

Name Change

Can I continue to notarize under my commission name even though I have a new name?

Please contact your state’s commissioning authority regarding this subject matter. The notary statutes in most states generally requires the notary to notify the state when his or her name changes due to marriage or divorce.

Can I use my new name when I notarize documents?

No. In most states, a notary public who wishes to perform notarial acts using his or her new name must be commission under the new name. Some states may only require submitting a new name change application with a new rider under the new name, but some states require submitting a new application for appointment with all of the legal requirements for a new commission. Contact your state’s commissioning authority for further instructions.

If I have a new name, am I required to contact the Secretary of State to report a name change?

The statutes in some states legally require notaries public to notify their state’s commissioning authority if is there is a change of name as a result of marriage, divorce, or legal proceedings. There are legal requirements with which notaries public are obligated to comply regarding a name change.

Do I have to change my name on my surety bond to reflect my new name?

Begin by contacting your state’s commissioning authority for instructions regarding your new name. Then contact your insurance company to inquire about a name change rider, which is usually required to notarize under a new commissioned name.

Is there a fee to file a name change with the state’s commissioning agency?

Generally, there is a filing fee to submit a name change for a commission under the new name. Contact your state’s commissioning authority to inquire about any applicable filing fee.

If I have a name change, do I have to file a new notary application?

In some states, a notary public who wishes to use a new name to perform notarial acts may be required to file a new application for appointment to hold the office of notary public. In such instances, a new commission with a new expiration date will be issued and the previous commission will be cancelled. Please contact your state’s commissioning authority to discuss the state’s required procedures regarding a new name change.

Legal disclaimer: The information provided on this page is for general informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. We do not claim to be attorneys and we do not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information provided. You should always seek the advice of a licensed attorney for any legal matters. It is your responsibility to know the appropriate notary laws governing your state. In no event shall the American Association of Notaries, its employees, or contractors be liable to you for any claims, penalties, losses, damages, or expenses, howsoever arising, including, and without limitation, direct or indirect loss, or consequential loss, out of or in connection with the use of the information contained on any of the American Association of Notaries website pages. Notaries are advised to seek the advice of their state’s notary authorities or attorneys if they have legal questions.