Who is a Notary Public?

A Notary Public is a person legally empowered to witness and certify documents and to take affidavits. A notary (i) takes acknowledgments, (ii) administers oaths, (iii) certifies that a copy of any document, other than a document in the custody of a court, is a true copy thereof, (iv) certifies affidavits or depositions of witnesses, and (v) performs such other acts as may be specifically permitted by law.

(Virginia Code Annotated, §47.1-12, as amended)

How do I become a Notary Public?

To become a notary public for the Commonwealth of Virginia, submit a completed application to the Notary Department of the Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth along with a fee of $45.00 made payable to the Treasurer of Virginia.​

Upon receipt of a completed application, proper endorsements and the correct fee, the Secretary, if satisfied the applicant is qualified to be appointed and commissioned as a notary public, prepares a notary commission for the applicant and forwards the commission to the Clerk of the Circuit Court in which the applicant elects to qualify.

The applicant should receive notice that the application has been approved within two to four weeks after the Secretary's Office receives the completed application. The notary has sixty days from the date of the notice to present himself/herself to the Circuit Court Clerk's Office where the applicant qualified to take the oath of office and pick up the commission certificate. At that time, the Clerk of the Circuit Court will require an additional fee of $10.00 which should be made payable to the Circuit Court Clerk's Office.