Training for GNW

I only do general notary work in Virginia (I have no desire to be an LSA). What is the best training for GNW through NNA? Should I stick with Notary Essentials and purchase the primer? Virginia only offers a handbook and a few vague notarization laws on their website, so there is no real training, except for experience.

Your state notary laws are all you need for GNW…along with some knowledge of witness requirements say.for example, for Powers of Attorney or wills or other trust documents.

All the knowledge you need is in your state website…free…just need to research

Best of luck. Don’t blame you for staying out of the LSA circus that loan signings have become…it’s a shame.

The NNA publishes a wonderful handbook entitled the Notary Code of Professional Responsibility which is a great primer for all things notary. It will help you immensely. I use it all the time and especially when I have GNW signings that I feel a little unsure about. I supplement my printed and bound version with excerpts from the NNA’s Notary Bulletins that address many specific issues. I believe you have to be a member of the NNA to access these tools. I highly recommend joining; the fee is relatively small and the benefits make it worth it.

I don’t agree with the others that all you need is a handbook or primer. You still need training. I’d recommend watching Notary Titans every week and taking general notary work training but that’s just me. I want to have as much training as possible so I’m prepared for anything that comes my way. If I only had NNA training, I’d never go out and notarize for anyone. It’s barely what I’d call training.


My advice about using the NNA handbook is just one of many ways to get good GNW insights. If I implied that the handbook is all you need, my apologies. I didn’t think I said that.
Of course, formal training is always worthwhile.

NNA training is a great training SUPPLEMENT after first studying and learning your own state’s notary laws.

Link to 2020 NNA Notary Public Code of Professional Responsibility:

If there is any conflict with any training materials you find online (NNA or otherwise) and your state’s laws, always follow your state’s laws.

And here is a virtual notary public training class specifically for new Virginia notaries:

Wishing you the best. ~Carmen

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Where can I get training for GNW? I took the course with NNA, but I still don’t feel confident notarizing other documents (out of state, POA, Wills, etc). BTW, I’m in NJ. Thanks.

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You don’t really need GNW “training” … If you went through NNA you should be okay for GNW … Your best teacher is your notary handbook …know your laws cold, what you can and cannot do, how to do it is all there. You won’t get many out of state POAs, Wills etc…but even if you do, you will follow YOUR notary laws in notarizing those documents, no matter where the docs are drawn up. Your state notary laws govern what you do and how you do it. You will gain confidence in DOING.

Best of luck


@dnjnotaryva & @GiaH218 I concur with @LindaH-FL (as noted below) regarding the advice to read, review, memorize, & ensure you COMPREHEND the notary laws for your individual State.


The only other insight, in my determination, that you may find helpful would be to purchase a reference guide to assist you from a Business standpoint. It can be purchased on Amazon for less than $25. The title is: “Marketing Your Non-Loan Notary Services” by Laura Vestanen. It was published in 2012 & I purchased my copy of it shortly after it was published. Keep in mind that the principles & techniques contained therein continue to be relevant & applicable in today’s GNW market.

This reference guide has been instrumental in elucidating methods that have contributed in the past & that continue to contribute to my success in this business sector.


Thanks Linda! I really appreciate you taking the time to reply. I guess I’m just scared of messing up. Lol
You are right, the best way to learn is by doing. :blush:


Thanks for the advice and sharing your thoughts. I can see how a reference book would help me grow my business especially if I have a lack of business acumen. I think in a way it is the reason why my confidence is so low. I will definitely buy it to help me get a better understanding how to market my business, as well as develop my mindset towards achieving success. Thanks again. :hugs:

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It only took me a few minutes to find a mistake in the NNA Code of Professional Responsibility 2020. On page xiii and xiv it says

“Acknowledgment” means a notarial act in which a principal declares that the principal’s signature on a document was voluntarily affixed for the purposes stated within the document and, if applicable, that the principal had due authority to sign in a representative capacity.

It goes on to say the definition of acknowledgement is consistent with the NNA’s Model Notary Act of 2010 and the Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts of 2010 and 2018 (RULONA). But RULONA does not require the signers to say they signed voluntarily. This could affect the proper wording of an acknowledgement certificate.

Sorry, but I’m not going to pay attention to a “code” when I can’t even get to page 1 without finding a significant error.

There are many reasons not to utilize that particular FOR-PROFIT business for guidance of any sort as their texts & website information is based solely upon laws & regulations within CALIFORNIA (not your own respective state). Reference the following Notary Cafe threads.