How to get a Texas Notary Commission
This Texas notary public guide is for informational purposes only. SuretyBonds.com does not regulate or manage commissions for notaries public in Texas. Contact the Texas Secretary of State for the state's latest official notary public commission requirements.
The Secretary of State, located in Austin, Texas, issues notary public commissions according to Texas Code. Specifically, Texas notaries are governed by Chapter 406 of the Government Code, Chapter 121 of the Civil Practice and Remedies Code and the Secretary of State’s administrative rules found in 1 Texas Administrative Code Chapter 87, as well as any other applicable state or federal laws.
To become a notary in Texas, you must report to the Secretary of State to get commissioned to perform any notarial acts. Your duty as a notary will be to screen the signers of significant documentation to validate identity, certify their willingness to sign without coercion or intimidation, and verify their understanding of the contents of certain documentation or transactions.
To become a notary public in Texas, you must complete the following steps.
How do I become a notary public in Texas?
Step 1: Verify you're eligible to become a notary public in Texas.
You must meet the following requirements to qualify as a notary public as required by the Texas Secretary of State.
- Be at least 18 years old
- Be a legal resident of Texas
- Not have been convicted of a felony or a crime that involved moral turpitude that has not been dismissed or discharged by law
NOTE: If you're an escrow agent or resident of a state bordering Texas, you might qualify as a Texas notary without meeting the residency eligibility requirement per Texas Insurance Code §2652.051.
Step 2: Purchase your Texas notary bond.
According to Texas Government Code Sec. 406.010, each person appointed by a notary public must file a $10,000 Texas notary bond to protect against fraudulent notary work that could occur because a notary intentionally or accidentally violated a notary law. You can buy your Texas notary bond online 24/7 for $50, delivered in minutes by email. For a small additional premium, you may also include errors and omissions insurance coverage. You must file your official notary bond with the Secretary of State before receiving your notary commission.
NOTE: Notaries who primarily perform notarizations as officers or employees of state agencies do not need a bond.
Step 3: Complete your application and pay required fees.
You can access state form 2301, the Application for Appointment as Texas Notary Public, here. You'll also need to include the following with your application.
- attachments regarding any criminal convictions, if any
- filing fee
There is a $21 filing fee that can be paid by personal check, money order, LegalEase debit cards, or American Express, Discover, Mastercard, or Visa credit cards.
NOTE: All applications submitted to the Secretary of State are subject to background checks once received.
Step 4: Submit your application.
You can submit your application packet by mail.
Notary Public Unit
P.O. Box 13375
Austin, TX 78711-3375
Or, you can deliver it in person.
The James Earl Rudder Office Building
Austin, TX 78701
The Secretary of State will issue your notary commission after verifying your information. You should receive your commission certificate from the state in about 2 weeks.
Step 5: Take your oath of office.
As stated in the The Texas Constitution Article 16, all elected and appointed officers must take the official oath of office before they begin their duties. Your oath will be signed and sworn to or affirmed in the presence of a person authorized to administer oaths. You cannot execute your own oath of office. You must bring your commission certificate to another Texas notary who will administer the oath and notarize the official form. Per Texas government code, the secretary of state will provide your oath of office form along with commission and educational materials.
Step 6: Purchase notary materials.
You must have and use an official notary seal that can be an inked stamp or embosser in a circular shape that isn’t larger than 2 inches in diameter or a rectangular shape that isn’t larger than 1 inch by 2 ½ inches. Your seal must have a serrated or milled edge border and surround the border with the following information:
- The words “Notary Public, State of Texas”
- A star of five points
- Your name as it appears on your commission
- Your commission expiration date
As a Texas notary, you must maintain a journal whether or not you charge fees for your notary public service.
Step 7: Purchase errors and omission insurance.
The Texas SOS recommends, but does not require, errors and omissions insurance to limit financial exposure. A surety bond protects consumers rather than the notary; many choose E&O coverage as it protects notaries from legal expenses out of their own pockets. Purchasing errors and omissions insurance protects both you and your company against losses not covered by traditional liability insurance.
Step 8: Participate in continuing education.
Although not required, the state recommends notaries continue taking educational courses that provide additional training and guidance. Please note that the Secretary of State does not provide workshops or seminars, nor does it endorse any specific training providers.
How do I renew my Texas notary commission?
To renew your Texas notary commission, submit the following to the Secretary of State no earlier than 90 days before the commission expires.
NOTE: The same Form 2301 application form will be used for renewal.
After submitting your renewal must buy a new Notary seal that displays your updated commission expiration date. You will also need to purchase a new journal or record book if your old one is full.
How do I become a remote online notary in Texas?
An online notary public is a commissioned notary public in the State of Texas who is authorized to perform a remote notarization using an audio-visual conference instead of having the individual physically appear before the notary at the time of the notarization.
On July 1, 2018, Texas approved remote online notarization (RON). Notaries with an active commission may register to become a Texas remote online notary by using the application process created by the Texas Secretary of State.
Last Updated: August 11, 2023