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Notaries Public

The Office of the Secretary of State is responsible for the commissioning of notaries public for South Carolina and keeping their oaths of office on file. Notaries public are public officers whose main purpose is to prevent fraud in the execution of documents. The South Carolina Notary Public Reference Manual will help you understand the duties of this office should you wish to apply, or serve as a reference if you currently serve as a notary public.

****NOTICE****

The preparation of deeds, notes, mortgages, and any other documents related to the transfer of property does not fall within the duties or powers of a notary public. A notary public may not offer advice related to the documents involved in the transfer of property or any other legal document.

The following process should be followed to apply to become a notary public or to renew a notary commission. You must be a registered voter to become a notary public. If you do not know your voter registration number, call your County Board of Elections and Voter Registration or go to www.scvotes.org.

  1. Carefully type or print legibly all information requested on the top portion of your application and sign in the presence of a notary public. Click on the form name to access the Notary Public Application/Renewal Form.
  2. If you have a current notary commission and you have changed your name or address since issuance of the commission, you must inform the Secretary of State's Office by filing a Change in Status form within 45 days of the change. A renewal application that indicates a notary has changed his or her name or address will be rejected if a Change in Status form has not been filed.
  3. If you were previously commissioned as a notary but that commission has expired, your application will be processed as a new application and not as a renewal. 
  4. Attach a $25.00 check or money order payable to “Secretary of State” to your application.
  5. Mail the application and check or money order to your county delegation for the required signatures. Your delegation office will forward your application and check or money order to the Secretary of State’s Office.  Allow your county delegation office two to six weeks processing time.  The delegation office must verify the notary applicant's name with the elections commission and obtain the necessary legislative signatures.
  6. If your county is not listed on the front of the application, forward your application and check or money order to: 

             South Carolina House of Representatives
             P.O. Box 11867
             Columbia, SC 29211-1867

  7. After your application is processed, the Secretary of State’s Office will mail your commission to the mailing address provided on your application.

To read the statutes pertaining to Notaries, follow the links below:

Notaries Statute 
Uniform Recognition of Acknowledgements Act


To obtain the forms for Notaries and Apostilles, follow the link below:
Notaries and Apostilles