Short Answer: The cost of getting a document notarized will vary depending on the state you live in, the type of document that needs to be signed, as well as any travel on behalf of the notary. Places like banks, libraries, and law offices typically offer the service for free, while other places like The UPS Store, local law enforcement offices, and pharmacies may have the service available for a fee. Maximum fees are regulated by each state — for in-person signatures, you can expect to pay $10 or less per signature (usually less than $5), and for online signatures, you will likely pay $10 to $25 each. For more about the cost of getting something notarized, see below.
How Much Does It Cost to Get a Document Notarized?
A notary public is a third-party witness to the signing of important documents, such as wills, trusts, contracts, mortgage and loan documents, divorce papers, affidavits, etc. A notary verifies that the person signing the document is who they say they are, and that they are in a position to legally consent to the signing — that is, they are signing it on their own free will and not under force or duress. Notaries are licensed by their state and have the obligation to be impartial and objective towards the document and the signer.
When getting a document notarized, you must only sign the document when you are in the presence of a notary — not before. Also, be sure to have a valid, government-issued ID when you go to have a document notarized.
The cost to get a document notarized varies depending on several factors, including the state you’re in, the type of document, as well as any necessary administrative fees or travel on behalf of the notary. Below, we break down notary fees by state, and we also explain how the other factors impact the cost.
Most states set a maximum fee that can be charged by notaries. Typically, this is $1 to $10 per signature. Vermont has by far the lowest fees, limiting notary fees to $0.50 cents. In California, the maximum fee for every signature is $15, and in New York, it is capped at $2. Notaries do not have to charge this amount, and in most states you can find notaries that charge less — or even nothing — for their services. Some states set no legal limit; most of these states, like Tennessee, declare that notaries may charge only “reasonable fees” for their services.
Maximum notary fees by state are as follows (Note that fees for other services may vary):
Sometimes, the type of document being notarized will affect the fee. It is your signature that is being notarized, and some documents — such as purchase loan agreements and mortgages — require more than one signature. This can drive up the cost of the notary services, as fees are typically charged per signature, and not per document. This means you may see fees that are much higher than your state’s maximum charge. For example, you may see a notary fee of over $100 for loan or divorce signing.
In Florida, for example, where the legal limit is $10 for each signature notarized, we found one notary who charges the following for different services:
- Administering Oaths and Affirmations: $10 (per seal)
- Attesting to a Photocopy: $10 (per copy)
- Solemnize all types of Marriage: Express — $50; Ceremony — $75
- Affirmation of Love, Commitment Ceremony, House Blessing and Baptisms: $75 for each ceremony
- Loan Signings, Mortgage or Vehicle Purchase, Divorce Signing: $85 plus a $20 service fee for each half-hour.
Some notaries offer the additional service of coming to your location. These are called mobile notaries, and they are allowed to charge additional fees for making the trip to you. Some states set a limit on the maximum fee that can be charged for each trip. In all cases, the fee must be “reasonable.” A common fee is $0.65 cents per mile from the notary office. If you request the services of a mobile notary, you should confirm trip fees before making an appointment so there are no surprises when you get the bill.
Administrative or Clerical Fees
Notaries may charge additional fees in addition to the standard notary fee if they incur costs due to clerical or administrative work done on behalf of the notary service for you. Notaries must clearly post or alert the customer to any possible charges. Additional fees may be incurred for:
- Copying documents
- Postage costs
- Phone calls
- Form completion
Where To Find a Free Notary Public
To help you get a document notarized at the lowest possible price, we have created a list of the best, and cheapest, places to look. Many of these options, especially banks, AAA offices, real estate and insurance agencies or acquaintances, may even provide FREE notary services. Wherever you go to have your documents notarized, remember to bring a valid, government-issued photo ID with you. It may also be necessary to have witnesses to your signature in addition to the notary. This requirement varies by state.
Chances are, you may know someone that is able to notarize documents for you — possibly without knowing it. You can ask around among friends, family, and co-workers. Even if no one you know personally is a notary, one of their connections might be, and it is possible they might waive the standard fee.
American Automobile Association (AAA)
If you are a AAA member, you can likely have your documents notarized at your local AAA office for free. Contact your local AAA to find out if they offer this service.
A common place to find a notary is your local bank or credit union. This is often a convenient and free option. Nearly all major U.S. banks, such as JPMorgan, Bank of America and Wells Fargo, have a notary public on staff in most of their branches. Most banks and credit unions offer notary services free to their customers. If you are not a customer of that bank, you may be charged a small fee.
For more, our article has information on bank notary services, including banks that will notarize something for free.
Almost every law office has a notary on staff. This is a convenient (and possibly free) option if the documents you need notarized are legal documents prepared by that office. For example, if you have an attorney prepare a power of attorney, chances are you can have it notarized at their office for free.
Many public libraries have notaries on staff, and the service is typically free at a customer service desk. Occasionally, a library may charge a small fee for notary service, so you can check with your local library to be sure. Availability will vary by location, and there may be some document restrictions.
Real Estate and Insurance Offices
Many real estate and insurance offices have a notary public on staff because of the types of documents handled in their line of business. They will notarize your document for free in the hope that they will get your business one day. You can contact your local office of a national company, such as RE/MAX, Century 21, Coldwell Banker and Fidelity National Title Insurance, to see if they have notaries.
Other Low-Cost Options for a Notary
The UPS Store
The UPS Store has over 4,500 locations throughout the U.S., so it should not be difficult to find a UPS Store that offers notary services. Fees for notary services will vary depending on the store location and the state. We spoke with customer service representatives from several UPS Stores in multiple states and found that all of them charge the maximum fee set by the state. Some locations may also charge separate fees for additional services. For example, one of the UPS Stores we spoke with charges an additional $2.50 for each witness needed. Another store we spoke with does not charge for witnesses.
Most store locations have a notary available Monday through Friday, though the hours vary by store location. Some stores also have a notary available on Saturdays. You can call ahead to your local UPS Store to find out its hours for notary service and whether or not an appointment is necessary, as some locations do require an appointment for notary services.
Sometimes, it makes the most sense to have your documents notarized online. This may be convenient if you are unable to travel to a notary, or you need to save time. Before using this method, check that your state accepts signatures notarized online. Fees will vary by company, but typically are about $25 for each notarization.
Places That May Have a Notary Public
Some public agencies and offices have notaries on staff or can bring in an independent notary as needed. Most will charge the maximum fee allowed by the state. You can contact any of the following locations in your town to find out if it has a notary available:
- City and town clerks’ offices
- Drugstore or pharmacy
- Hospitals (Note: Hospitals typically do not staff notaries, but they can bring in mobile notaries as needed.)
- Law enforcement offices
- Travel agencies
When you need to get a document notarized, the cost will depend on the type of document you need to get signed, the state you reside in, and any travel the notary must do to get to your location. Most states limit the fee that a notary can charge, and in general, you can expect to pay less than $10 per signature (often less than $5) and less than $25 for an online signature. Several places like banks, libraries, and law offices offer notary services for free. You may also be able to find a notary at a local pharmacy, town clerk, or law enforcement office.