North Dakota Frequently Asked Questions

How long will my North Dakota notary commission last?

Your North Dakota notary commission will be valid for 4 years.

Do I need a $7,500 surety bond?

Yes, the state requires all North Dakota notaries to hold a $7,500 surety bond throughout their term. This bond protects the public from any mistakes the notary might make.

What is errors and omissions insurance?

If a client claims that you made a mistake and files a lawsuit against you, errors and omissions (E&O) insurance can protect you from having to pay legal fees out of pocket. You can add this optional insurance policy to your order during checkout.

For a low, one-time fee, you will be covered for your entire four-year term. Plus, you can choose a level of coverage that makes the most sense for you. For example, a $25,000 E&O policy will cover any applicable legal fees up to $25,000. If needed, you can purchase additional coverage.

How do I renew my North Dakota notary commission?

To renew your North Dakota notary commission, start by purchasing the North Dakota notary renewal package. It includes a $7,500 bond and a notary stamp for your next term.

We'll mail you your bond and stamp, which you'll need to complete your renewal application on the Secretary of State's website. When you complete the online application, print it out. You will then mail it to the Secretary of state along with your notary bond and the $36 state renewal fee. Checks should be payable to North Dakota Secretary of State.

Mail your renewal application, bond and payment to:
Secretary of State
State of North Dakota
PO Box 5513
Bismarck, ND 58506-5513

After the state receives your application, it will mail you a Certificate of Authorization and a Verification of Notary Stamping Device form. Imprint your new stamp onto the verification form and mail it back to the Secretary of State for approval.

Once your stamp is verified, the state will issue your notary commission certificate. When you receive it, email a copy to

Can I notarize anyone's signature?

North Dakota notaries are prohibited from notarizing their own signature or their spouse's signature. Additionally, you may not notarize a document in which you or your spouse has a direct beneficial interest.

It is not illegal to notarize the signatures of close family members, such as a parent or sibling, although North Dakota does not recommend it.

What happens if I change my name or address?

If your address changes, you must notify the Secretary of State within 60 days. A letter informing the Secretary of State about the change of address is acceptable.

If you legally change your name, you must complete a Notary Public Name Change online and submit a rider to your surety bond to the Secretary of State. You should state your new name, your previous name and the effective date of the name change in the rider. You will also need to pay a $10 filing fee for the name change.

Once those steps are complete, the state will issue you a Certificate of Authorization to obtain a new stamping device. Affix your new notary stamp to the certificate and return it to the Secretary of State. After your stamp is approved, you will be issued a notary commission with your updated name.

Can I start notarizing documents as soon as I receive my Certificate of Authorization?

No. You are not permitted to notarize documents until you receive your official notary commission from the Secretary of State. The date that your commission begins will be listed on your commission certificate.

Do I have to live in North Dakota to be a North Dakota notary?

No. To be eligible to become a North Dakota notary, you must meet one of the following work/residency requirements:

  • Be a resident of North Dakota
  • Have a place of employment or practice in North Dakota
  • Reside in a county that borders North Dakota and which is in a state that extends reciprocity to a notary public who resides in a border county of North Dakota