Part 2. Commissioning.

10B-5. Qualifications.

(a) Except as provided in subsection (d) of this section, the Secretary shall commission as a notary any qualified person who submits an application in accordance with this Chapter.

(b) A person qualified for a notarial commission shall meet all of the following requirements:

(1) Be at least 18 years of age or legally emancipated as defined in Article 35 of Chapter 7B of the General Statutes.

(2) Reside or have a regular place of work or business in this State.

(3) Reside legally in the United States.

(4) Speak, read, and write the English language.

(5) Possess a high school diploma or equivalent.

(6) Pass the course of instruction described in this Article, unless the person is a licensed member of the North Carolina State Bar.

(7) Purchase and keep as a reference the most recent manual approved by the Secretary that describes the duties and authority of notaries public.

(8) Submit an application containing no significant misstatement or omission of fact. The application form shall be provided by the Secretary and be available at the register of deeds office in each county. Every application shall include the signature of the applicant written with pen and ink, and the signature shall be acknowledged by the applicant before a person authorized to administer oaths.

(9) Repealed by Session Laws 2013-204, s. 1, effective July 1, 2013.

(c) The notary shall be commissioned in his or her county of residence, unless the notary is not a North Carolina resident, in which case he or she shall be commissioned in the county of his or her employment or business.

(d) The Secretary may deny an application for commission or recommission if any of the following apply to an applicant:

(1) Submission of an incomplete application or an application containing material misstatement or omission of fact.

(2) The applicant's conviction or plea of admission or nolo contendere to a felony or any crime involving dishonesty or moral turpitude. In no case may a commission be issued to an applicant within 10 years after release from prison, probation, or parole, whichever is later.

(3) A finding or admission of liability against the applicant in a civil lawsuit based on the applicant's deceit.

(4) The revocation, suspension, restriction, or denial of a notarial commission or professional license by this or any other state or nation. In no case may a commission be issued to an applicant within five years after the completion of all conditions of any disciplinary order.

(5) A finding that the applicant has engaged in official misconduct, whether or not disciplinary action resulted.

(6) An applicant knowingly using false or misleading advertising in which the applicant as a notary represents that the applicant has powers, duties, rights, or privileges that the applicant does not possess by law.

(7) A finding by a state bar or court that the applicant has engaged in the unauthorized practice of law. (Code, ss. 3304, 3305; Rev., ss. 2347, 2348; C.S., s. 3172; 1927, c. 117; 1959, c. 1161, s. 2; 1969, c. 563, s. 1; c. 912, s. 1; 1973, c. 680, s. 1; 1983, c. 427, ss. 1, 2; c. 713, s. 22; 1991, c. 683, s. 2; 1995, c. 226, s. 1; 1998-228, s. 3; 1999-337, s.3(a); 2001-450, s. 1; 2002-126, s. 29A.21; 2005-75, s. 1. ; 2005-391, s. 4; 2006-59, s. 2; 2009-227, s. 1; 2013-204, s. 1.)