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Notary Service: Home

This is a guide to describe the duties of an Ohio notary and what law library staff can provide as a notary.

What our Library Does

We certify signatures on an affidavit and acknowledge all instruments in writing.

In Ohio, notaries are not permitted to directly certify, or affix a seal to copies of documents, photographs, or anything else not involving a signature.  However, the person providing the document copy can make a written statement attesting that the copy is a true reproduction of the original, and then have their signature notarized on that statement, which is then attached to the copy.

For more information, see this page from the Ohio Society of Notaries.

What do we charge?

We charge $1.00 per signature, cash only.


Affidavit: A written or printed declaration or statement of facts, made voluntarily, and confirmed by the oath or affirmation of the party making it, taken before an officer having authority to administer such oath.

Oath:  (1) A solemn usually formal calling upon God or a god to witness to the truth of what one says or to witness that one sincerely intends to do what one says;  (2) a solemn attestation of the truth or inviolability of one's words <The witness took an oath to tell the truth in court.>

Jurat: a certification added to an affidavit stating when, before whom, and where the affidavit was made.

Acknowlegement: Stating that something is true or factual. When a buyer agrees to pay for their purchase. A message that confirms a communication was recieved. An oath done in public. 

About This Guide

This guide is intended to give some basic information on Ohio Notary Services and to inform patrons what the law library staff can and can not notarize.

Disclaimer: Hamilton County Law Library staff, as a service to its patrons, provides reference services and information, including these research guides. To protect the public interest, Ohio law requires that legal advice and services be rendered only by qualified attorneys who are subject to the guidelines of the courts. Library staff members do not interpret the law, provide legal advice, or explain court procedures. The information provided is not a substitute for legal advice from a licensed attorney. None of our services shall be construed as giving legal advice.

Notary Process at the Law Library

The process to notarize a signature is as follows:

  • Signer must fill out the document completely
  • Signer must show a valid ID
  • Pay a fee of $1.00 per notary signature
  • Signer under Oath must acknowledge or swear to the truthfulness of information on document
  • Notary Public signs and seals the document

If a section for the notary certificate, signature and seal is not included on the document, a Jurat or Acknowledgment Certificate must be attached. The signer must decide which certificate they would like to use. Below are samples of the two options.

Sample Acknowledgement:
State of Ohio, County of Hamilton
The foregoing instrument was acknowledged before me this (date) by (signer’s name).
(Signature of Notary)
(Name), Notary Public

Sample Jurat:
State of Ohio, County of Hamilton
Sworn to and subscribed before me this (date) by (signer’s name).
(Signature of Notary)
(Name), Notary Public

Notary Manual   


Certification of documents:

The Law Library does not certify documents, only the individual Agency that provided the original document is able to certify.

For Passport Certification, see here.

Statutes and Codes

Notaries Public and Commissioners   ORC 147   

Powers - jurisdiction   ORC 147.07    

"A notary public may, throughout the state, administer oaths required or authorized by law, take and certify depositions, take and certify acknowledgments of deeds, mortgages, liens, powers of attorney, and other instruments of writing, and receive, make, and record notarial protests. In taking depositions, he shall have the power that is by law vested in judges of county courts to compel the attendance of witnesses and punish them for refusing to testify. Sheriffs and constables are required to serve and return all process issued by notaries public in the taking of depositions.
Effective Date: 08-23-1977 ."

Notary, acknowledgment, verification or oath requirement  ORC 1306.10    

"If a law requires a signature or record to be notarized, acknowledged, verified, or made under oath, the requirement is satisfied if the electronic signature of the person authorized to perform those acts, together with all other information required to be included by other applicable law, is attached to or logically associated with the signature or record.
Effective Date: 09-14-2000 ."


Contact Us

The Law Library is open Courthouse hours, Monday-Friday, 8:00-4:00. 

For directions to the library, see our website.

We cannot provide research by phone or email, except for governmental officials and subscribers.  Please come into the library for research guidance and self-help.

In person: Hamilton County Courthouse 1000 Main Street, 6th floor Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

By phone: 513.946.5300

On the web.

By fax: 513.946.5252

By email.

Need Legal Assistance?

Need legal help?

The Law Library is open to the public for self-help during its regular business hours.  The information provided is not a substitute for legal advice from a licensed attorney.

For legal assistance, consider the following organizations:

Lawyer Referral Service, Cincinnati Bar Association A free referral and a reduced consultation fee for the first 30 minutes  513.381.8359

Lawyer Referral Service, Northern Kentucky Bar Association A free referral with hourly fees established by participating attorneys  859.781.1525

Legal Aid of Greater Cincinnati Legal representation, information, advice and referral for people in need of legal help  513.241.9400

Pro Seniors Legal Hotline and Referral Service Help for persons over the age of 60  800.488.6070

Disability Rights Ohio Advocates for the human, civil, and legal rights of people with disabilities in Ohio  800.282.9181

Ohio Attorney General, Services for Consumers Help resolving consumer issues, tips on scams and deceptive practices  800.282.0515