If you have obtained your commission at the request of an employer, or have been have a job which may require you to perform notary functions, you fall into the second category of notaries and there are a few rules that differ from independent notaries. First of all, however, remember that the notary commission belongs to you, the employee, regardless of who paid for the application, examination or bond.
The employer may, upon agreement with the notary, limit the duties of employed notaries during the course of employment to performing notary services for transactions directly associated with the business purposes of the employer. You will, of course, notice the important difference here between a notary who is an independent contractor and an employee. As an independent notary, you may not pick and choose who you notarize documents for, but the employer, upon agreement made with the notary, may indeed limit an employee’s notarial functions. In any case, since the notary commission belongs to you whether or not you are an employee, you may act as an independent notary on your own time.
All notaries must obtain a seal and keep an official record of every notary act performed in an approved Journal of Notarial Records. Failure to obtain a notary seal or properly maintain a journal can be cause for the Secretary of State to suspend or revoke the notary’s commission. The notary journal and seal must be kept in a locked and secured area when not in use. If the notary who is an employee wishes to notarize documents outside of regular business hours, the same journal must be used as the notary may only use one journal at a time regardless of what they are notarizing.
Another important consideration regarding notaries who are employees is that a notary who received his or her commission as an employee at the expense of the employer may, upon agreement with the employer, be required to submit fees charged for notarial services back to the employer. This is usually up to negotiation between you and your employer; however, if a notary public is an employee of a school or government office and was appointed at the request and expense of their employer and notarizes documents specifically for that employer, any fees charged must be remitted back to that employer. Of course, any fees from documents you notarize outside of the employer’s control may be kept by you.