Notary services are available for free at the Adult Services Reference Desk. Please call the Reference Desk at 630-924-2730 to check notary availability. Occasionally, notaries are unavailable on nights and weekends.
The library does not offer electronic notarizations or remote online notarizations. You must appear in person at the library for notarizations. IMPORTANT: Do not sign or date notarization forms ahead of time.
To have a document notarized, please follow these steps:
- Do not sign or date the form ahead of time. It must be signed in front of the notary.
- All people signing must be present.
- All blank spaces, with the exception of the signature/date lines, should be filled in prior to arriving for notarization. Notaries may not notarize a document with any blank spaces. "If any space is intended to be left blank, then the signer might line through the space or write in "N/A" or "Not Applicable". (National Notary Association)
- Bring unexpired, valid photo identification. Photo IDs must be issued by the state or federal government and have a valid signature. The ID name must match or have more information than the document.
- Valid Example: Document lists Mary H. Jones. Your license shows Mary Harriet Jones. This ID is valid for identification purposes.
- Invalid Example: Document lists John Henry Smith. Your license shows John H. Smith. This ID is NOT valid for identification purposes.
Items We're Unable to Notarize
- Cook County real estate transactions (AKA document of conveyance)
- Vital records - Birth, death, marriage, or divorce certificates and citizenship or naturalization certificates. You must request a certified copy from the county clerk, local registrar, or state Department of Public Health/Vital Records.
- School records, diplomas, transcripts (apostilles) - Only the school registrar has the authority to provide certified copies of student records. They must have a school seal and a tamper proof envelope, so these should be requested directly from your school.
- Military IDs or government common access cards (CAC)
- IRS tax returns - The IRS can provide certified copies of tax returns or a free tax transcript.
- Documents for loan closings, escrow, or similar transactions that require a certified Notary Signing Agent. From the National Notary Association: "A Notary Signing Agent is hired as an independent contractor to ensure that real estate loan documents are executed by the borrower, notarized, and returned for processing on time. Completing this critical part of the loan process enables the loan to be funded." Library notaries aren't trained/certified in these services and can't process these types of documents.