Interested in finding out how to become a notary signing agent in North Dakota? We’ve got you covered.
In order to become a notary signing agent, you will need to:
- Be commissioned as a notary public
- Take a loan signing training course
- Become Signing Professionals Workgroup (SPW) compliant
- Purchase your notary supplies
This Notary Signing Agent North Dakota article breaks down everything you need to know in easy-to-follow, succinct steps, and should help you commence your loan signing career with as little difficulty as possible.
Recommended: Interested in getting started? Have a look at the National Notary Association’s notary signing agent packages.
What is a Notary Signing Agent
Notary signing agents (NSAs) are crucial in the real estate sector as they act as a guide for borrowers through loan document signings, acknowledging their signatures, and returning documents to the lender.
On the surface, the role of an NSA might seem identical to that of a notary public, but the distinction lies in the level of expertise required for each task.
While a notary public primarily verifies the identities of signatories and acknowledges signatures, an NSA possesses a deeper understanding of loan documents and has been trained to provide unbiased explanations of each document’s purpose.
Although no extra legal qualifications are required to become an NSA in North Dakota, undertaking specialized training is strongly recommended for a couple of reasons. Namely, because it:
- Makes you a more appealing candidate to lenders, title companies, and other industry recruiters — who typically prefer NSAs with specific training due to the complexity of loan signings
- Ensures that you’re actually capable of competently fulfilling all of the responsibilities associated with being an NSA
Note: For more information on this specialized training, see Step 2: Take a Loan Signing Training Course below.
How to Become a Notary Signing Agent in North Dakota
If you’re interested in the idea of becoming a notary signing agent in North Dakota, you can get started today by completing the following steps.
Step 1: Become a Notary Public
In order to become a notary signing agent, you will first need to be commissioned as a notary public in North Dakota.
In order to do this, you will need to complete the following steps:
- Meet the basic eligibility criteria: You must be at least 18 years old, a citizen or permanent legal resident of the US, and reside in a county that borders North Dakota and is within a state that extends reciprocity to notaries public in North Dakota
- Complete and file an application form: The next step is to continue on with the application form, which can be completed online with FirstStop, the North Dakota Secretary of State’s online services portal
- Purchase a $7,500 surety bond: You’ll then need to get a bond in the amount of $7,500, fill out the Notary Bond (SFN 19355) form, print it, and get it signed in the presence of a notary. Along with a $36 application fee, mail the notary bond form to the North Dakota Secretary of State
- Obtain a notary stamp: If your application is successful, you will receive your Certificate of Authorization and a Verification of Notary Stamping Device Form. Buy an official notary seal and present your authorization to your stamp vendor. Place an impression of the stamp on the Verification Form then return it to the Secretary of State. If approved, they will issue your notary commission certificate
- Take a notary training class: Taking a notary training class equips you with the knowledge and skills needed to perform notarizations. This ensures legal compliance and protection against potential errors or misconduct
For a more in-depth overview of the process of getting commissioned as a notary public in North Dakota, we recommend having a look at our How to Become a Notary in North Dakota overview.
Step 2: Take a Loan Signing Training Course
After you receive your notary commission and are ready to begin operating as a notary public, you will likely want to undertake a specialized loan signing training course.
Even though this is not a requirement in the state of North Dakota, it is highly recommended as it offers the following benefits:
- In-depth understanding: A specialized course can allow you to dive deep into the complexities of mortgage loan signings, improving your overall understanding and capabilities as an NSA. It can also help you become well-versed in how to handle unexpected situations with professionalism
- Boosts employability: Your certificate signifies commitment and a specialized skill set, both of which greatly increase your marketability. Candidates with additional qualifications are also very attractive to hiring companies
- Confidence builder: A course can provide you with a certain degree of “hands-on experience,” which will inevitably make you more comfortable and confident during actual signings. This confidence can translate into improved service and positive client experiences
Did you know? A loan signing training course can also prepare you to pass the Signing Professionals Workgroup (SPW) exam.
We recommend the National Notary Association’s notary signing agent certification course, which includes background screening, a comprehensive guide, a priority notary signing agent listing, and a loan documents sourcebook.
Step 3: Become SPW Compliant
Even though this step is optional, it is generally recommended.
Following SPW protocols helps you uphold industry best practices and maintain professionalism in handling loan signings.
Ultimately, SPW guidelines help you streamline the process, reduce errors, and enhance client satisfaction.
Getting compliant involves undergoing a background check, passing an exam, and purchasing errors and omissions (E&O) insurance (with a minimum of $25,000 in coverage).
Step 4: Purchase Signing Agent Supplies
After you’ve been commissioned as a notary public and have spent time in order to become qualified as a loan signing agent, you will need to purchase your notary supplies.
Loan signing agents use official tools, such as a notary seal or stamp to imprint their official signature and other essential details onto a document to validate it.
While optional, you may want to purchase a notary journal or record book to record details of each notarized transaction, providing a permanent record of the notarial acts you perform.
Step 5: Obtain Errors and Omissions Insurance
In North Dakota, obtaining an E&O insurance policy is entirely optional but strongly recommended.
This type of insurance protects you from potential lawsuits and financial liabilities arising from mistakes in your notarial acts.
Examples in which an E&O insurance policy would be useful include:
- You’re overseeing a busy loan signing and, in a rush, you accidentally miss a signature. The loan process stalls, the borrower incurs late fees, and you’re hit with a compensation claim
- While going through a home loan document, you wrongly notarize a signature. The mortgage approval is lost and the client files a claim against you
- During a loan signing, you skip a page inadvertently. The document is void, leading to delays and extra work. In this case, the lender could choose to file a claim against you in order to be compensated for any additional expenses
Note: Purchasing E&O insurance is actually a requirement for becoming SPW compliant.
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Notary Signing Agent North Dakota FAQ
How do I become a notary signing agent in North Dakota?
To become a notary signing agent in North Dakota, you must first be a commissioned notary public. The next step would be to seek specialized training in loan signings. You may also consider joining a professional organization to gain relevant experience and networking opportunities within the industry. Read our guide on How to Become a Notary Signing Agent.
How much is a notary fee in North Dakota?
North Dakota notaries can charge $5 per notarial act. You can also include additional fees for your services, such as travel fees (especially if you’re a mobile notary) or technology fees if you conduct remote online notarization (RON). These fees are allowed only if the signer and you, as the notary, agree to it in advance.
Is North Dakota a notary state?
Yes. Notaries public are appointed by the Secretary of State’s office to serve the public and perform various notarial activities, such as acknowledging signatures, administering oaths, and certifying copies of documents, as allowed by North Dakota law. To find out how you can earn more than you would just performing notarial acts, check out our Notary Signing Agent North Dakota.
Does North Dakota allow remote notarization?
Yes. If you are commissioned as a North Dakota notary, you may register to perform remote online notarization (RON) as long as you satisfy North Dakota’s requirements. RON is the process of notarizing documents electronically via video conferencing, allowing signers and notaries to interact remotely.
For all related articles, have a look at our How to Become a Notary Signing Agent page.