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What is a protest?

A protest is a certificate of dishonor under the hand and seal of a United States consul or vice consul or a notary public or other person authorized to certify dishonor by the law of the place where dishonor occurs.

When is a protest required?

Protest is not required except upon dishonor of a draft that on its face appears to be either drawn or payable outside of the United States, its territories, and the District of Columbia.

Are there procedures that a notary must know to protest an instrument?

Yes. The states that provide notaries public with the authority to protest instruments also prescribe the notarial procedures required to protest an instrument. Although some states permit notaries public to protest an instrument, such notarial procedures should only be performed by notaries who have expertise in such protests. The notaries in banking institutions generally are more familiar with the legal requirements regarding the protest of negotiable instruments.

What is the form of certificate of protest?

A certificate by the notary public who performed the notarial procedures for a protest.

May I refuse to protest an instrument?

Yes. Unless a notary public has expertise in the protest of an instrument, the notary must refuse the request.