Notary Service

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, since notaries are not always here, especially on nights and weekends. Notaries are usually available until one hour before closing (Monday-Thursday until 8PM, Friday-Saturday until 4PM, Sunday until 4PM when open), but always call first to confirm availability.

Notarization Instructions

  • To have a document notarized, please follow these steps:
  • SIGNERS: DO NOT sign or date the form ahead of time. It must be signed in front of the notary.
  • SIGNERS: All people signing must appear in person at the library. The library does not offer electronic notarizations or remote online notarizations.
  • WITNESSES: For any documents that require witnesses (power of attorney, wills, etc.), you must provide your own witnesses. Witnesses must appear in person at the library at the same time as the document signer(s) with a valid photo ID. Witnesses must be at least 18 years old, of sound mind when witnessing, and they can't benefit from the contract or be related to one of the signers (no conflicts of interest). The library cannot provide witnesses, and witnesses may not be solicited from patrons using the library.
  • DOCUMENT REQUIREMENTS: You must bring in the entire document. "A notary cannot complete a notarization properly without having a moment to visually scan the entire document. Seeing only a signature page is not sufficient." (Notary Public Stamps website)
  • DOCUMENT REQUIREMENTS: 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 a signer indicates that certain spaces in a document are to be left blank because they do not apply, they should insert a line through the spaces or write “Not Applicable.” This protects the signer from later unauthorized insertions, and it may prevent the notary from appearing as a witness in a lawsuit." (Illinois Notary Public Handbook)
  • IDENTIFICATION/ID: 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.
  • If these instructions are not followed, notaries will not be able to complete the notarization.

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.