How to become an Illinois Notary
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Be a resident of the State of Illinois for at least 30 days, or a non-resident of a state bordering Illinois who has worked or maintained a business in Illinois for 30 days preceding the application
- Be a citizen of the United States or an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States
- Be able to read and write the English language
- Never have been convicted of a felony
- Not have had a notary commission revoked during the past 10 years
- Meet the eligibility requirements
- Properly complete and submit a notary application form to the Secretary of State with a $10 filing fee and include the $5,000 bond
- Each notary public application must include a legible photocopy of the applicant’s driver’s license or a state-issued identification card
- After the applicant is approved for appointment, a specimen signature and a filing fee of $5.00 must be recorded with the county clerk where the applicant resides or where the non-resident works or maintains a business. If the appointment is not filed with the county clerk within 60 days, the county clerk will return the commission to the Secretary of State and the commission will be cancelled.
- Click here to download the application forms.
Index Department, Notary Division
111 East Monroe Street
Springfield, IL 62756
Type – rubber stamp
Ink color – ink capable of being photographically reproduced
Shape – rectangular
Dimensions – not more than one 1 inch in height by 2 ˝ inches in length
Required elements - notary’s official name, the words “Official Seal,” “Notary Public,” “State of Illinois,” and “My Commission expires (date).” The seal must have a serrated or milled edge border. If a notary seal is stolen, the notary public must report the theft to the police. If a notary public loses his or her notary seal, the Secretary of State recommends that the notary resigns his or her notary commission.
Note Notaries who perform a notarial act involving a document of conveyance that transfers or purports to transfer title to residential real property located in Cook County, Illinois, must create a notarial record with very specific details regarding the notarial act.
- Acknowledgments - $1.00
- Oaths or affirmations - $1.00
- Protests - $1.00
- Take acknowledgments
- Administer oaths or affirmations
- Witness or attest a signature
- Perform any other act authorized by law
Note: A notary may not issue certified copies of any document.
- Use any name or initial in signing certificates other than the one by which he or she was commissioned
- In any document, stationery, letterhead, business card, or other written material translate from English into another language terms or titles including, but not limited to, notary public, notary, licensed, attorney, lawyer, or any other term that implies the person is an attorney (including the word “notario publico”)
- Acknowledge any instrument in which the notary’s name appears as a party to the transaction
- Affix his signature to a blank form, affidavit, or certificate of acknowledgment and deliver that form to another person with the intent that it be used as an affidavit or acknowledgment
- Take the acknowledgment of or administer an oath to any person whom the notary actually knows to have been adjudged to be mentally ill by a court of competent jurisdiction and who has not been restored to mental health as a matter of record
- Take the acknowledgment of any person who is blind until the notary has read the instrument to the person
- Take the acknowledgment of any person who does not speak or understand the English language, unless the nature and effect of the instrument to be notarized is translated into a language that the person does understand
- Change anything in a written instrument after it has been signed by anyone
- Prepare any legal instrument or fill in the blanks of any instrument other than a notary certificate; however, this prohibition shall not prohibit an attorney, who is also a notary public, from performing notarial acts for any documents he or she prepares
- Use facsimile signature stamps in signing his or her official certificates
Revised: July 2015
Notary bonds and errors and omissions insurance policies provided by this insurance agency, the American Association of Notaries, Inc., are underwritten by Western Surety Company, Universal Surety of America, or Surety Bonding Company of America, which are subsidiaries of CNA Surety. The American Association of Notaries is owned by Kal Tabbara, a licensed insurance agent.