Notary Services

Notary Publics are commissioned by the California Secretary of State but file the oaths of office with the San Francisco County Clerk.

What to do

A Notary Public is an official appointed by the Secretary of State and authorized to serve the public as an unbiased witness when performing many legal formalities relating to the drafting or certifying contracts, deeds, and other official documents. These official acts are called notarizations or notarial acts. A notary public must file an oath of office and bond with the county clerk's office in the county where their principal place of business is located. This must be done within 30 calendar days from the commencement date of the commission. The 30-day period cannot be extended.

In-Person

In-Person

1. Go to Office of the County Clerk

An appointment for Notary Services is not required.

2. Bring documents with you

  1. Original Commission Certificate issued by the CA Secretary of State
  2. Original Notary Bond for $15,000 (bond must have wet signature)
  3. Two (2) completed and unsigned Oath of Office forms (name on forms must match ID being presented)
  4. Government-issued identification
  5. Filing Fee

Note: Names on commission, bond, and oath must match exactly

3. Take Oath

4. Pay Fees

Mail

Mail

Statutes provide for filing the oath and bond by mail. It should be noted that the county processes documents in chronological order, but not necessarily on the date received due to the volume of documents. The oath and bond may be submitted to the county clerk before the commencement date of the commission and must be filed no later than 30 calendar days after the commencement date of the commission. It is recommended that the oath and bond be submitted in person to guarantee timely filing.

1. Go to a Notary Public

2. Bring documents to Notary

  1. Original Commission Certificate issued by the CA Secretary of State
  2. Two (2) completed and unsigned Oath of Office forms (name on forms must match ID being presented)
  3. Government-issued identification
  4. Notary Fee

Note: Names on commission, bond, and oath must match exactly

3. Send documents and fee to County Clerk by certified mail

  1. A photocopy of your Commission Certificate issued by the CA Secretary of State
  2. Original Notary Bond for $15,000 (bond must have wet signature)
  3. Two (2) completed Oath of Office forms signed by you and the notary that administered the oath.
  4. A self-addressed, stamped envelope
  5. Filing and Bond Recording Fee

Note: Names on commission, bond, and oath must match exactly

Note: It is the notary's responsibility to administer the oath, and sign and stamp the bottom portion of the oath. They cannot add a jurat or acknowledgment page, as neither authorizes an oath administration.

Special cases

How to become a Notary Public

How to become a Notary Public

To become a California Notary Public, you will need to contact the Secretary of State Notary Public Division for guidelines and registration as a new or renewing notary public:

By phone: (916) 653-3595

Online: California Secretary of State's Notary Public

Surrender of Notary Journals

Surrender of Notary Journals

If any notary public resigns, is disqualified, removed from office, or allows their appointment to expire without obtaining reappointment within 30 days, all notarial records and papers shall be delivered within 30 days to the County Clerk of the county in which the notary public's current official oath of office is on file.

Send journal(s) and fees via Certified Mail to:

Office of the County Clerk

1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place

City Hall, Room 168

San Francisco, CA 94102

Important Note: The first page of each Notary Journal must be filled out with the notary name, commission number, expiration date, and address for identification and indexing purposes.

Get help

Office of the County Clerk

City Hall, Room 160
1 Dr. Carlton B Goodlett Place
San Francisco, CA 94102

Mon to Fri, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm Processing Hours

View location on google maps

California Secretary of State

Notaries Public Filing Legal Information

Journal Surrender Legal Information

Notary Public Official Seal Legal Information

Last updated December 16, 2022