Live Help

Notary Public Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Select a tab then a question:

Answer

To give an oath, the person must sign in the presence of the notary. For other documents, the person must sign the document or acknowledge their signature in person. This also applies to performing e-notarization (electronic notarial) acts.

Answer

Yes. Never notarize a blank document.

Answer

Yes. Never notarize the signature of someone you don't know without requiring proper identification.

Answer

Yes. A notarization without the seal is improper.

Answer

No, unless you are completing an acknowledgement or oath form which is already a part of the form. A notarization without the form is improper, and it must always include the date of notarization.

Answer

If you are a named party to the transaction or may receive direct benefit, such as cash, property or title from the transaction, you have a disqualifying interest and must refrain from notarizing any such documents.

Answer

Employees may notarize for an employer, providing the transaction does not stand to benefit the notary in excess of their normal salary and benefits.

Answer

If the application is correct and complete, allow approximately two (2) to three (3) weeks for processing.

Answer

Your commission is not effective until you receive your commission certificate and have had your notary stamp made.

Answer

Government notaries are employees of state and local governing bodies only. Federal employees may apply as regular notaries and have the federal agency pay the fee.

Answer

Yes. As long as the entity is established by state law, it is considered a governing body.

Answer

The maximum fee for notarization of each signature per West Virginia Code §39-4-30 is $5.

Answer

No. Effective June 3, 2018, a surety bond or its equivalent in professional insurance is no longer required to be maintained during a notary's commission.

Answer

Notaries are not required to maintain a bond after June 3, 2018. Refunds from the bonding company is a matter between the two parties (the notary and the bonding agency).

Answer

Yes. Pursuant to West Virginia Code §39-4-19(a), a notary public may select one or more tamper-evident technologies to perform notarial acts with respect to electronic records. A person may not require a notary public to perform a notarial act with respect to an electronic record with a technology that the notary public has not selected.

Before a notary public performs her/his initial notarial act with respect to an electronic record, a notary public shall notify the Secretary of State that she/he will be performing notarial acts with respect to electronic records and identify the technology she/he intends to use [see West Virginia Code §39-4-19(b)].

The notary must complete and submit the E-Notarization Authorization application (Form N-2) made available by the Secretary of State as proper notification of her/his intent to perform electronic notarial acts. There is no fee to file the e-notarization application.

Answer

Yes. The application form will be sent to the address on record with the Secretary of State. However, if you don't receive the form, it is your responsibility to get the form and submit the completed application if you want to renew your commission.

Answer

You are the person who holds the commission, not the employer, and the employer may not have the commission canceled. However, it is your duty to file a change of address and get a new seal immediately if your employer's address is on your seal. If you are a government notary, your commission expires when you terminate employment with (or are terminated by) the agency.

Contact the Notary Division for further assistance regarding Notary Public commission.


If we may be of any further assistance, please don't hesitate to contact us:  304.558.8000   toll free 866.767.8683  email:   Notary@wvsos.gov

​​​​