The purpose of notarization is to prevent fraud and forgery. A Notary Public acts as an official and unbiased witness to the identity of the person who comes before the notary for a specific purpose.
The Index Department of the Illinois Secretary of State appoints and commissions a Notary Public
Notaries are appointed for a term of four years. An applicant for an appointment must:
• be a citizen of the United States or an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence;
• be a resident of the State of Illinois for at least 30 days;
• be at least 18 years of age;
• be able to read and write the English language;
• have not been convicted of a felony;
• have not had a notary commission revoked during the past 10 years.
An applicant must complete the Notary Public Application from the Secretary of State and obtain a notary bond valued at $5,000 from a bonding or surety company. The filing fee is $10.00 and the check or money order is made payable to the Secretary of State.
What happens once your commission is approved?
The County Clerk’s Office will contact you upon their receipt of your commission from the
Secretary of State. You will be required to submit a specimen of your signature and the required filing fee.
• $5.00 fee in person
• $10.00 fee by mail
If the applicant fails to record his or her appointment 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.
No refund will be issued.
Notary Public Seal
Every notary public must obtain and use a rubber stamp seal. The seal must include the notary
public’s name exactly as the notary was commissioned and the date the notary’s commission
expires. For more information regarding the notary seal and other general information, an
Illinois Notary Public Handbook is available from the Secretary of State.