The Montana Secretary of State’s office is committed to providing the resources and information that notaries need in order to perform their statutory duties correctly. Fundamental to that commitment is education, and the Secretary of State’s office offers a variety of options for notaries to gain the requisite knowledge and understanding of the notarial office.
There is currently no mandated requirement for notary education. However, effective July 1, 2020, all notaries will be required to provide certification that they have completed at least four hours of approved training prior to applying for a commission (new or renewal). Until then, training is optional although strongly suggested.
In accordance with the mandates of §1-5-621, MCA, we have reached out to several private sector notary education providers who have agreed to produce online training courses specific to Montana’s laws. As these courses are submitted to us and are approved as required by law, we will post the links here.
Effective October 1, 2019 all notaries – both new and renewing – are required to pass an examination to prove their understanding of the duties and responsibilities of the office. While mandatory training is not required at this time, it is certainly recommended that notaries avail themselves of the most current information about the laws, rules, procedures, and ethics of performing notarizations in Montana.
There is no additional cost for the examination. There are 50 questions and you will have up to 60 minutes to complete the exam. If you do not complete the exam in a single session, you will have to start over. You will have three attempts to achieve a passing score of 80%. If you are not successful after three attempts, you will be blocked for 3 months before you can try again. Because you must submit your application within 6 months of taking the examination, we highly recommend that you take the exam before applying for your notary bond.
The primary resource for the information you need to pass the exam is the Montana Notary Public Handbook. The latest edition is now available for you to download and study.
In addition to the classes and courses offered to the public, the Secretary of State’s office can provide customized presentations for individual businesses, conferences, and seminars.
Biennial Statewide Notary Conferences
Montana is the only state in the country to offer this outstanding opportunity for notaries public to learn more about their craft and network with other notaries to share ideas, issues, and common issues. Nationally recognized notary experts from various industries and professions come to Montana to share their knowledge and passion during this two-day event. Plans are now being made for the 2020 Montana Notary Conference to be held next spring.