Notary Bulletin

Hotline Tip: I Notarized A Document After My Commission Expired!

What should I do if I inadvertently notarized a document after my commission expired?

First, consult your state laws. Some states, such as Arkansas, have so-called “curative” laws that recognize the validity of imperfect notarizations. Arkansas’s statute says no Notary shall perform any official act after the expiration of his or her commission, but the law also says that no act will be held invalid if a Notary does so.

In contrast, other states, such as Hawaii, have laws that say any notarial act performed after the termination of a commission shall be invalid. So check your state laws.

If your state will not uphold a notarization performed after a Notary’s commission has expired, you should inform all signers for whom you notarized after your commission expired so they may have their documents re-notarized.

Hotline answers are based on the laws in the state where the question originated and may not reflect the laws of other states. If in doubt, always refer to your own state statutes. — The Editors

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained NNA Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions. Call (888) 876-0827, Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST; Saturday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

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Quiz: The Many Types Of Notarial Acts

Notaries perform many different duties for the public — and it’s easy to lose track of the different acts and what states they’re authorized in. Test your familiarity with common — and uncommon — notarial acts.

(A link to the correct answers is provided at the end of the quiz.)

Confronted with a tricky notarization? Unsure how to proceed? NNA members have unlimited access to our expertly trained Hotline counselors to help you with all of your notarial questions.

(888) 876-0827

Monday through Friday:
5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST

Saturdays: 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST

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