California Notary Basic Requirements

California Notary basic requirements are not much different than that of other states, with a few exceptions. You will see below the basic requirements to become a notary, fees that can be charged and other useful information. Please feel free to follow the link to the California Notary Handbook listed below. Much useful information there, but I have boiled down the basics for you.

Basic Requirements

California allows you to apply for appointment if you meet the following basic requirements:

* Must be 18 years old.

* Be a resident of the state of California

* Undergo a background check and fingerprinting, with no criminal activity in your history.

* Complete an approved 6 hour training course.

* Pass a state approved test.

* Obtain a $15,000.00 bond.

* You must also purchase a seal and notary journal. More about Bonds Here

Term of Commission

The Term of the California Notary is 4 years.

Re-appointment is possible but you will have to take a new 3 hour course. If your commission has expired prior to your application, you will have to take the 6 hour course.

You must re-take the exam prior to re-appointment.

The California Secretary of State suggest that you start the re-appointment process 6 months prior to the expiration of your commission.


As a notary, you may charge a $10.00 fee for each signature except the following:

* $20.00 for deposition plus a $5.00 fee for administrating the oat and $5.00 for the certificate to the deposition.

* $5.00 for recording every protest.

* $5.00 for every notice of non-payment of promissory note, order, draft or check.

You cannot charge a fee for the following:

* Verifying any nomination document or circulator's affidavit.

* Vote by mail ballot.

* US Military Veteran who applies for application or claim for pension, allotment, allowance, compensation, insurance or other veteran's benefits.

Some Differences

California law requires that a right thumbprint be obtained for each of the following real estate documents:

* Deed

* Quickclaim Deed

* Deed of trust

* Power of Attorney

Notaries can only certify copies of Powers of Attorneys.

A notary MAY issue confidential marriage licenses IF they have made an application to do so and are authorized by the county clerk.

To see the California Notary Handbook in full, click here and good luck!

Any Question? Feel free to Contact Us

Are you a Notary with a Funny or Strange Loan Closing Story

Do you have a great loan closing story? Share it!

Ever been to a closing and leave shaking your head? Tell us your funniest and strangest war stories from the front lines.

Enter Your Title

Tell Us Your Story![ ? ]

Author Information (optional)

To receive credit as the author, enter your information below.

Your Name

(first or full name)

Your Location

(ex. City, State, Country)

Send Your Story

Check box to agree to these submission guidelines.

(You can preview and edit on the next page)