New Fee Law CA Notaries

New Fee Law CA Notaries

3 Facts About The New Fee Law CA Notaries Need To Know

Fact #1: You Can’t Charge Higher Fees Until January 1

The new law that raises California’s maximum Notary fees to $15 for most notarizations does not take effect until January 1, 2017. The NNA has heard reports that some California Notaries mistakenly are charging the higher fees now. Until January 1, you only may charge the current maximum fee of $10 for each acknowledgment or jurat.

Fact #2: Your Immigration Service Fees Are Also Going Up

If you are an immigration consultant, the new law also raises certain fees that you may charge for your services. Currently, the maximum fee immigration consultants are allowed to charge for entering information provided by the customer on a set of immigration forms is $10 per individual for each set of forms. This fee also will increase to $15 on January 1.

Also remember that California strictly regulates Notaries working as immigration consultants. Any Notary who provides immigration services must register and post a $100,000 surety bond with the Secretary of State before working as an immigration consultant. Notaries who hold themselves out as immigration consultants may not advertise they are a Notary. Further, nonattorney Notaries may not advise customers regarding their immigration status or the immigration forms they need, or represent them in an immigration proceeding, even if registered or bonded as an immigration consultant.

Fact #3: You Must Change Your Advertising Notice

If, as a nonattorney Notary, you advertise your services in a foreign language, you know you must post notices in English and the foreign language that include California’s statutory maximum Notary fees. The notice also must include a disclaimer that the Notary is not an attorney and cannot give legal advice on immigration or other legal matters.  If you have advertised in a foreign language and posted such a notice in the past, you will need to update it as of January 1, 2017 to reflect the new fee changes.

If you also provide a fee schedule to clients, don’t forget to update that as well.

David Thun is an Associate Editor at the National Notary Association.