Are you considering becoming a notary in Florida? Becoming a notary is increasingly becoming an attractive career option, allowing individuals to gain meaningful employment while helping people with their most important documents. It’s relatively easy to obtain the qualifications and licenses, but there are specific steps that need to be taken before you can become fully certified as a notary public in the state of Florida. We’ll discuss all you need to know about becoming a notary in Florida here, so keep reading!
Who can become an FL Notary?
To become a notary in Florida, you must be:
- At least 18 years old.
- A legal resident of Florida.
- Able to read, write and understand the English language.
What disqualifies you from being a notary in Florida?
If you have been convicted of a felony and have a criminal record, you must have your civil rights restored back before becoming a notary.
If your judgment was withheld or your sentence suspended, you must submit the following documentation:
- A written statement that explains why you were charged and what happened
- Provide a copy of the court ruling, imposed sentence, or an equivalent legal document.
- If you were not found guilty and did not lose your civil rights, you only need to provide a written statement and court documents. However, if you were convicted of a felony, you will need a copy of the Certificate of Restoration of Civil Rights (pardon). If the state where the felony occurred does not give you this document, then you will need to explain why and have substantial proof that your civil rights have been restored.
What is the Florida notary public application process?
Take the Notary Education Course
According to state regulations, first-time applicants who want to be notaries must complete at least three hours of interactive or classroom instruction within one year of their application. The Department of State provides this training for free online. Additionally, there are other approved providers on the state website if needed – but renewing notaries may skip directly ahead to the next step.
Get a notary surety bond from a bonding agency
After you get the necessary training, it is essential to contact one of Florida’s approved bonding agencies to receive the surety bond that allows you access to a notary public commission. It is important to note that this bond protects the general public from any potential misconduct or negligence on behalf of the notary and does not act as protection for the notary.
Complete the notary application form
Make sure you fill out the application form completely. The form will be given to you by the bonding agency you choose. If any information is missing, your application will be sent back to the agency until all materials are submitted.
Submit your notary application to the bonding agency for further review. Your bond agency will submit all your completed paperwork to the State and update you on any progressions or changes in status.
Is training required to become an FL Notary?
Yes, first-time applicants must complete at least three hours of interactive or classroom instruction within one year of their application. The Department of State provides this training for free online, but there are other approved providers. Renewing notaries may skip directly ahead to the next step.
Does a Florida notary need a surety bond?
In Florida, you need to get a $7,500 bond from a company that is allowed to do business in Florida.
Does a Florida notary need errors and omissions insurance?
Errors and omissions insurance is not required in Florida, but it is a good idea to have. This insurance will help protect you if someone makes a claim against you as a result of something you did while acting as a notary public.
Do Florida notaries have a notary seal?
Yes, Florida notaries must use a state-approved seal that meets the requirements stated in Florida law.
Do I need to take a Notary exam in Florida?
No, Florida does not require a written exam to become a notary public. However, you will be required to take an approved education course to apply for a commission.
How long does it take to become a FL notary?
Depending on your present schedule and the duration needed for processing by the Department of State, you could have a Florida notary public commission certificate in two to four weeks
Is it difficult to become a notary in Florida?
No, the process is relatively straightforward. You will need to take an approved education course, get a notary surety bond from a bonding agency, and submit your completed application form for review. Once all of these steps are taken care of, you should be well on your way to becoming a notary public in Florida.
How long does a Florida Notary commission last?
A Florida Notary commission lasts four years. At the end of this time, you must renew your commission with the Florida Department of State if you wish to stay an active notary.
How much does it cost to become a notary in Florida?
For those seeking to become a Notary in Florida, the application fee is an affordable $39.
The notary bond and bond filing should cost about $70-$75.
Certain notary supplies must be acquired to fulfill your duties if you’re a Florida notary public. The expense of these products depends on the brands and types you choose – an average rubber notary stamp will cost between fifteen and twenty-five dollars, while notarial journals range from ten to fifty dollars. Additionally, pens, sticky notes, and notary stamp ink refills should be considered when making purchases.
How Much Can Florida notaries charge?
Florida notaries can charge a maximum of $10 for each standard notarial act and $25 for remote online notarizations.
Can I be a Notary Signing Agent in Florida?
Yes, you can be a Notary Signing Agent in Florida. You should take an education and certification program to learn how to handle loan documents and market your business. Once all of these steps are taken care of, you should be well on your way to becoming a Notary Signing Agent in the state of Florida.