Is A Notary Public Allowed To Decline Notarization?

Notaries often come across people, whether their bosses, co-workers or customers that ask them to illegally notarize their documents. Sometimes, a notary public may not be able to tell the difference or know completely whether they should or should not notarize a document, especially if they are being pressured by powerful people. However, there are rules as to when a notary public can or cannot decline notarization. Let’s explore these rules in detail.

At What Point Can Notaries Refuse Notarization?

It is important to know when to decline notarization in order to prevent the fraud from being committed. Different states have different laws for notaries to follow regarding the refusal of service. However, it is safe to say that if there is any doubt of the documents being illegal or fraudulent.

If a signer does not follow the correct protocol or meet the requirements for the notarization to take place, the notary public from Oklahoma City. Some of the disqualifications may include:

  • The signer not making a personal appearance
  • The signer has not given their proper identification
  • If there is a language barrier
  • The signer is disoriented or seems like they are being forced to sign
  • If the signer is refusing to take an oath or affirm their documents

Sometimes, the documents may lead the notary public from Oklahoma to decline notarization, such as:

  • There are missing pages or blank spaces in the documents
  • If the required notarial certificate is not obtained

Then, there are also times when the notary public from Oklahoma may present a conflict of interest, and cannot unbiasedly notarize the document due to:

  • Being the signer of the document
  • The financial documents benefiting them as well
  • The signer is their parent, spouse, or child

Other situations in which a notary public from OKC can decline notarization are:

  • If the notary public is suspicious that the transaction is illegal, false, or deceptive
  • If the act being asked of them is not authorized for them to do
  • The signer cannot or will not pay the fee that is required for notarization
  • Being requested to notarized outside of your office hours
  • If the act that is being requested violates the guidelines of their workplace

Of course, notaries cannot refuse notarization due to a personal bias against the signer’s gender, race, religion, nationality, disabilities, or lifestyle.

Notaries must maintain their professionalism and use a respectful and calm tone when refusing the notarization. They must also explain why they are declining notarization. Lastly, the notary public has to document their refusal for any future questioning.

Become Notary Public

“Notary”stands for a person who is authorized to do some legal activities. These activities mostly include, certification of contracts, actions and the documentation process needed by jurisdiction in Oklahoma. Likewise, “Notary Public” stands for a public officer, who is authorized by law, to serve the citizens in non controversial issues like property, estate and business affairs.



Becoming Notary Public

Generally, financial institutions need Notary services. For example; work based on financial deals or real estate contracts. Financial organizations (banks), law making organizations and other large scale businesses are asked by the government to become a notary. By doing so, they can facilitate customers. Meanwhile, people who own small businesses are more interested in becoming a notary. They are interested because, a notary public is allowed to charge a fee for signing documents of his customers.


There are some requirements by law in Oklahoma. Specifically, If a person wants to become a notary public, he should fulfill all the requirements.

  • A person must be the United States citizen.
  • About residency;  a) A person needs to be a Oklahoma legal inhabitant, or; b) A person who is not a local resident of Oklahoma but working there.
  • A person must be 18 years of age or more.

Process to Become a Notary Public

  • Firstly, a person must has fulfilled all the requirements of qualifier set by the law.
  • Oklahoma Notary Public Application form is available online. fill the form completely.
  • Specifically, the fee and form should be submitted to state’s secretary.
  • Later, after submitting the application, a person needs to have the equipment which will be required in commission. Such equipment are like bond and seal.
  • Moreover, once you get your bond, you must file it with state’s secretary.
  • Insurance of Error and omission is optional. However, this insurance is very useful.
  • Now, Exercise your Notary Public roles.
  • If you feel you are lacking some skills, you can consult your experts or go for training.

Cost and Duration for Application Approval

Notary Public application submission and filing the Bond with the state’s Secretary hold some cost. The cost for application submission is 25 USD. Likewise, the cost for filing the bond is 10 USD. However, cost of all equipment depends upon the chosen seller.

duration of approval of application is not exact. It can vary. Typically, it takes 2 to 10 weeks. Then, secretary of state grant commission to the Notary Public Candidate.

Test and Training

Selection process is simple. No entry test and training. However, a person can take training by his own choice to improve his skills.


A person changes his name during his service. According to law,  he continue his commission with the old name. Nevertheless, if he wishes to change his name in his commission documents too, he has to resign the current commission and re-apply for notary public as a new candidate.

Expiration of Notary Public Commission

In Oklahoma, Notary Public Commission expires after 4 years. this validity can not be extended. A person has to re-apply if he wants to join again.

5 Mistakes To Strictly Avoid As A Notary Public

Most people assume that a notary public’s job is quite easy to do. People perceive that the job entails just having to go through paperwork and getting people to sign documents, which must be a piece of a cake. That could not be further away from the truth. The mental labor that notaries go through every day, as well as having to go through documents diligently and not make mistakes which could even end up with them getting sued (yes sued) is enough to make their jobs one of the toughest and most detailed.


If you are a notary public or are hoping to become one, here are the top 5 mistakes that you need to strictly avoid while on duty.

1. Not Asking For The Signer’s Personal Appearance

This is one of the biggest mistakes a notary public from Oklahoma City could ever make. It is only in exceptionally rare cases, such as when the attorney of a signer represents them, does the signer not have to present. No matter what other excuses a signer gives, personal appearance is a requirement that needs to be fulfilled no matter what, otherwise the notary public can get into some serious trouble with the law.

2. Not Checking The Certificate Properly

One of the most common and most silly reasons why a notary public’s documents are rejected is due to the notarial certificates not having the complete details. As a notary public from Oklahoma, it is absolutely necessary to check and recheck whether the signer’s name is correctly entered and the venue is also added into the notarial wording. Even checking to see if you have put the right date in is a must to avoid issues from arising. Notaries should make sure that the notarial wording includes all the required information.

3.   Not Having Enough Evidence Of Identity

It differs from state to state, but it is necessary for a notary public to collect sufficient details backed by authentic evidence or documents of identity from the signer before notarization. A notary public from OKC must at least request for a copy of the signer’s current ID card, as that will provide photo evidence, a description of the signer, as well as the original signature.

4.   Not Stamping Properly

A document with a faded or an upside down stamp is likely to be rejected. So, the notary public has to be extra cautious while ensuring that their seal/stamp is placed properly and does not cover the notarial wording, as that will cause the document to become illegible.

5.   Not Having an In Date Notary Seal

Again, this may differ from state to state, but the notary seal needs to show the commission expiration date. If notaries use an expired stamp, their document might get rejected, so it is essential to make sure that your notary stamp/seal is not expired.

These are just some of the mistakes that notaries make while on duty. Thus, the notary public needs to be very careful throughout the notarization process, so to not make any mistakes and to avoid either getting into trouble or getting their document rejected.