It is the responsibility of the notary to obtain and keep an official seal upon receiving a new or subsequent commission. The State does not provide the seal. They may be purchased from most stationery, stamp, or office supply stores. It is the notary’s responsibility to assure that the stamp is correct and complies with the requirements described below. Do not expect that the retailer or manufacturer knows the requirements. Provide this page to the vendor if there are any questions.
All notaries with a commission expiration date of October 1, 2013 or later are required to have an ink stamp unit, rectangular in shape and approximately 1” x 2 ½” in size, that contains a seal (as described below) and the additional statutorily mandated information: the notary’s printed name; the title, “Notary Public for the State of Montana”; the words, “Residing at” with the name of the city or town where the notary lives; and the notary’s commission expiration date, shown as Month/Day/Four Digit Year. The stamp may be either blue or black ink only.
The following is an illustration of the combination seal/stamp unit that is now mandated for Montana notaries with commission dates expiring on October 1, 2013 or later:
- All information as shown above must be included. The commission expiration date must be complete. It is not acceptable to “fill in” the year.
- If any of the information contained in the seal/stamp changes during the notary’s term of office, the stamp must be replaced. Handwritten corrections are not allowed.
- The rectangular border is a REQUIRED part of the stamp.
- Notaries will have to purchase a new stamp for each term of office.
- When you use this seal/stamp, you do not have to enter this information again by hand on a notarial block.
For “Grandfathered” Notaries ONLY:
A currently commissioned (Commission expiration date prior to October 1, 2013) Montana notary may use either a crimper-type or an ink-type seal; it is a matter of personal preference. In choosing between an embosser or ink-type seal, notaries should give consideration to the increased use of electronic transmission of documents. The ink-type offers a higher degree of legibility when documents are faxed or copied frequently. Currently commissioned notaries may continue to use the seals they presently use (even crimpers) until the end of their current term as long as they are compliant with the requirements for the notary seal:
Montana statute requires the notary’s seal to bear only the following information; anything additional renders the image invalid as a Montana Notarial seal:
A notary public may never use the Great Seal of the State of Montana as all or part of a notarial seal/stamp