Notary Public FAQs



Official stamps and journals

Q1. Do I have to have a notary stamp?

A1. Yes. By law, your official stamp must be clearly applied under or near your official signature on every notary certificate. Do not stamp over signatures, and avoid stamping over text.

 

Q2. Will the Secretary of State send me a stamp and a journal?

A2. No. Our office does not provide notary stamps or journals. However, we provide a journal template on our website that you can print and bind.

 

Q3. Where can I get a notary stamp and a journal?

A3. You can order a stamp and purchase a journal from many office supply stores. You may want to search the internet for companies that sell notary supplies. Prices vary.

Provide your notarial certificate of commission when ordering your supplies. Make sure the name and notary ID number on your supplies match the certificate. You can find a copy of your certificate on your notary home page after your application has been approved.

 

Q4. What types of notary stamps are acceptable in Colorado?

A4. Your notary stamp must be a rectangular ink stamp with a rectangular outline or border. The border may be plain or decorative. Embossers cannot be used.

The law does not specify a particular size or ink color.

Inside the border, you must have:  [1]

  1. Your name as it appears exactly on your certificate,
  2. The words "NOTARY PUBLIC",
  3. The words "STATE OF COLORADO",
  4. Your notary ID number, and
  5. Your commission expiration date.

No other information can be placed within the border or outline.

Example:

JOHN Q. SAMPLE
NOTARY PUBLIC
STATE OF COLORADO
NOTARY ID 20121234567
MY COMMISSION EXPIRES AUGUST 8, 2016

 

Q5. Where can I find my notary ID number?

A5. The ID is printed on your certificate below the date that it was issued. Your notary ID should also have been provided to you in an email from our office. You can search for your ID on Verify a Notary.

 

 Q6. What should I do with my old notary stamp?

A6. When you resign or renew your commission, you must render your stamp unusable by destroying it, defacing it, etc.  [2]

 

Q7. Am I required to keep a journal?

A7. Yes. Every notary public must keep a journal of every notarial act, with only one exception. 

If the original, copy, or electronic record of the document includes all of the information that would be entered in your journal; and is kept by your firm or employer, then you do not have to maintain a journal.

However, recording every notarization in a journal is strongly recommended as the best practice.

 

Q8. What information should be recorded in my journal?

A8. You must record at the time of the notarization:  [3]

  1. The date of the notarial act.
  2. The type of notarial act (oath, affirmation, acknowledgement, etc.),
  3. Description or title of record (deed, POA, etc.),
  4. Name and address of each individual signer and witness,
  5. Signature of signer and any witnesses,
  6. If the identity of the signer is based on personal knowledge, a statement to that effect,
  7. If the identity of the signer is based on “Satisfactory Evidence,” a brief description of the method of ID (credible witness or acceptable ID) and the type of ID presented, and
  8. Fee charged, if any.

A notary may also record any other related information deemed necessary.

 

Q9. What should I do with my journal when I resign or finish my journal?

A9. A current or former notary must choose to do one of the following and notify the Secretary of State:

  1. Retain the journal for 10 years from the last date of entry,
  2. Submit their journal to the Colorado State Archives, or
  3. Leave it with their employer.

You can notify us of your choice by completing the “Completed Notary Journals” form. This form can be filed electronically by logging in to your notary account and selecting “Store my completed journals”.

If you’re leaving the journal with your employer, you need to notify us that your employer has agreed to maintain the journal indefinitely or transmit the journal to State Archives and notify the Secretary of State per section 24-21-519(10)(a)(I) and (b), C.R.S.

If you’re leaving your journal with your employer, you must provide them a copy of the “Completed Notary Journals” form.

 

Q10. Can I list multiple signers on one notarial certificate?

A10. If multiple signers appear before the notary at the same time, the names may appear on the same certificate. Because there are multiple signers, separate entries must be made in the journal for each signer.

 

Q11. Do I need to record a journal entry of an oral oath or affirmation?

A11. Yes. All notarial acts should be recorded in your journal.

Top

 

[1] 24-21-517, C.R.S.
[2] 24-21-518, C.R.S.
[3] 24-21-519, C.R.S.