CA Only: Sending Journals to SOS after expired commission

Hello I’ve been a notary signing agent since 2015 in California and I read on the SOS website the other day that once your commission has expired that I need to turn in the journals for that commission. Is this true and has anyone done this in California? I’ve always thought you locked up the old journals and held onto them until you were ready to retire as a notary. Please only respond if you’re a notary in California.

Great question. I’m in California too. I thought we had to keep them for 5 years then shred them

Oh no! You absolutely NEVER shred them. Our journals are recordings that belong to the State once we are done with them. Real Estate fraud can sometimes take YEARS to surface and if you are called into court for a transaction years from now, but you’ve shredded your book, there may be a penalty imposed on you for doing so. You are to lock them up until you resign as a notary at which point you are to turn them in the the county clerks office. Even if you passed away, someone in your family has to turn them in on your behalf, but they are never discarded.

I thought I read that we now have to turn them in once a commission number has expired, and then begin a new book(s) for the new commission number. Hopefully someone on this forum can clarify for us.

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