So you want to be a Notary Public? It’s an esteemed calling that dates back centuries, with notaries being indirectly responsible for the rise and fall of the Roman empire (mostly). And while it might not have quite the same cachet now that everyone can read and write today, it’s still an important role relied heavily upon by the courts. But what do you need once you’ve become a Notary? What should you have with you whenever a new client steps into your lair (ahem – office! We meant office!)? It’s simple!

Here are ten things you need to have to be a Notary Public (and five things you don’t):

  1. A pen. You always need a pen. A good one that works too, not just one of those pens that you have to scribble on a piece of paper until it starts to finally write.
  2. Your notary stamp!
  3. An extra stamp just in case the first one fails. It’s always important to have backups to your backups!
  4. Another pen.
  5. Your notary journal! And if you don’t understand why you need a journal, go read this.
  6. Extra acknowledgements and jurat forms just in case the document being presented by the client does not measure up to your individual state requirements. It’s essential to be prepared!
  7. Bring another pen.
  8. Your state handbook.
  9. Might as well make sure you have another pen just in case.
  10. A smile! (Okay, not technically necessary, but don’t be a grump.)

And five things you don’t need:

  1. A ninja sword. Unless, of course, you’re a ninja notary.
  2. A hat that says “I’m a Notary Public and all I got was this awesome hat.”
  3. A suit. Feel free to dress business casual when you perform notarizations. I mean, you can do it naked if you had to, but that might not be professional enough. Unless you have a full body tattoo of a tuxedo.
  4. Speaking of tattoos, while it may be insanely cool to get your seal tattooed on your upper arm just to show what a badass you are, it’s not necessary. Save that until you join the super secret NP Hellraiser Motorcycle Club.
  5. A pet bird that squawks “You’re a Notary Public. I’m proud of you!” every time a new client comes in. Just have parents who are disappointed in you like the rest of us!

And there you have it! Is there anything you think we forgot? Let us know in the comments!