Acceptable ID

California Notary Acceptable Identification

© 2013 Kim Giancaterino. All Rights Reserved.

California Notary Acceptable Identification

A California notary public can establish a signer’s identity using the following forms of identification. Keep in mind these forms of identification must either be current, or have been issued within the past 5 years.

  • An identification card or driver’s license issued by the California Department of Motor Vehicles

  • A United States passport

  • An inmate identification card issued by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, if the inmate is in custody in California state prison

  • Any form of inmate identification issued by a sheriff’s department, if the inmate is in custody in a local detention facility

A California notary public may also rely on any one of the following forms of identification. These forms of ID must include a photograph, description of the person, signature of the person, and an identifying number.

  • A valid consular identification document issued by a consulate from the applicant’s country of citizenship, or a valid passport from the applicant’s country of citizenship

  • A driver’s license issued by another state or by a Canadian or Mexican public agency authorized to issue driver’s licenses

  • An identification card issued by another state

  • A United States military identification card (caution: current military identification cards might not contain all the required information)

  • An employee identification card issued by an agency or office of the State of California, or an agency or office of a city, county, or city and county in California

  • An identification card issued by a federally recognized tribal government

Be Prepared to Show Valid Identification

What happens if a signer doesn’t possess one of the forms of identification mentioned on this list? In that case, two credible witnesses will need to vouch for the signer.

California Notary Acceptable Identification: Credible Witnesses

Credible witnesses must personally know the signer. In accordance with California law, these individuals are required to present a valid form of identification, take an oath, and sign the notary journal. A credible witness must neither be named in, nor benefit financially from the document being signed.

California Notary Acceptable Identification

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2022 Notary Public Handbook (California Secretary of State)

Passport and American flag photograph by 27707

Passports photograph by PublicDomainPictures

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