Are you thinking of becoming a notary in Maine?
Being a notary can be both personally and professionally rewarding.
It’s an especially great way to increase your income with minimal effort and establish yourself among other professionals within the state.
Becoming a notary is reasonably straightforward, but it does require knowing some information and understanding the steps involved.
In this blog post, we’ll give you all the information you need to become a successful and respected notary in Maine quickly and easily.
What are the requirements for becoming a Maine Notary Public?
To become a notary in Maine, you must:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language;
- Be a resident of Maine or a resident of New Hampshire that is regularly employed within Maine
- Be recommended for a notary commission by a registered Maine voter who can attest to the applicant’s ability to perform the duties of a Notary Public;
What disqualifies you from becoming a Maine Notary Public?
Maine law disqualifies anyone from becoming a notary who:
- Has had a notary commission revoked for official misconduct in the state of Maine or any other state within five years from the notary application date
- Has been convicted of a crime where they could go to jail, that person cannot be appointed. This is because they are either waiting for their sentence, free while appealing the conviction or in jail/under probation or parole. If the person has been convicted of a crime involving dishonesty, that person cannot be appointed for ten years after they are released from jail/probation or, if they were not in jail, from the date of the conviction.
What is the Application Process to Become a Notary Public in Maine?
- Make sure you meet all the requirements listed in the section before this.
- Download and print the Application for a Notary Public Commission from the Maine Secretary of State website.
- Demonstrate your knowledge of Notarial Law and Practices by taking the open book practices knowledge examination on the notary application form.
- Sign the notary application and oath of office in the presence of a notary public.
- The municipal clerk or registrar of voters needs to sign and seal the application for the notary applicant.
- A registered Maine voter needs to fill out the part of the application that says the person applying can do the duties required for being a notary public.
- Submit the completed notary application to the Secretary of State. There is also a $50 application filing fee.
- Wait for the certificate of qualification (oath of office form) to come in the mail.
- You will need to be sworn into office within 30 days from your appointed date. To take up the duties of office, swear an oath before a dedimus justice and present the certificate of qualification issued by the Secretary of State.
- Mail the notarized certificate of qualification to the Secretary of State within 45 days of your appointment date.
- The Secretary of State will then dispatch the certificate of qualification to the applicant, thus legally certifying them as a Maine notary.
Is notary training required to become a notary in Maine?
No, notary training is not required for Maine notaries.
However, it’s recommended that Maine notaries consult with an experienced and knowledgeable notary instructor or mentor who can provide guidance, tips, and advice to help you on your way.
Is a notary exam required to become a notary in Maine?
Yes, a notary exam is required to become a notary in Maine.
The exam is an open book covering the laws and regulations of being a notary public.
You must pass this exam for your application to be approved.
Is a surety bond required to become a Maine notary?
No, a surety bond is not required to become a Maine notary.
Is a notary errors and omissions insurance policy required to become a notary in Maine?
No. A notary errors and omissions insurance policy is not required to become a notary in Maine.
However, it’s strongly recommended that you invest in one as it will protect you from financial liability and legal fees due to mistakes or negligence when performing notarial acts.
Does Maine require a notary seal?
No. Maine does not require a notary seal.
However, it’s recommended that you obtain one for convenience, as it will help to authenticate your official acts as a Maine notary public.
The state has specific notary stamp requirements if you choose to use one.
Is a notary journal required in Maine?
No. Maine does not require a notary journal for most notarial services, but it is strongly recommended that you keep one for your records.
A notary journal can help protect you from legal liability by documenting all transactions performed as part of your official duties as a Notary.
A notary journal is required for any marriage performed by the notary public.
How much does it cost to become a notary in Maine?
There is a $50 fee to submit the application.
You can choose to buy a notary seal or stamp.
They cost between $15 and $25.
You can also buy a notary journal. It costs between $10 and $50.
How long does it take to become a notary in Maine?
It takes four to six weeks to become a commissioned Notary Public in Maine.
This depends on when you can do your steps in the process and how long it takes the Secretary of State to process your application.
How long is the term of a notary public commission in Maine?
A Maine Notary commission lasts seven years if the person is a Maine resident.
The commission only lasts four years for New Hampshire residents.
How do I renew my notary license in Maine?
You can renew your Maine notary commission by applying to the Secretary of State.
You will need to submit another $50 fee along with the application and complete all of the initial steps. After processing and approval, you will receive a new certificate of qualification.
Can I perform remote online notarization in Maine?
No, Maine does not currently allow remote notarization.
How much can a Maine notary public charge for performing notarial acts?
Maine does not set maximums for fees for performing notarial acts.
Can you become a Notary Signing Agent in Maine?
Yes, you can become a Notary Signing Agent in Maine.
To become a signing agent, you must have basic notary training and knowledge of real estate documents, loan contracts, and other legal paperwork.
This is best done by taking a notary signing agent course to learn how to perform notarial acts in a typical loan signing.