August 7, 2010 -
TITLE 4. ADMINISTRATION
PART VIII. BUREAU OF COMMISSIONS, ELECTIONS AND LEGISLATION
Subpart C. COMMISSIONS
CHAPTER 165. NOTARIES PUBLIC
Sec.165.1 Statement of policy—lesser offenses incompatible with
the duties of a notary public.
§ 165.1 Lesser offenses incompatible with the duties of
a notary public Statement of Policy.
(a) The Secretary of the Commonwealth reviews applications
for appointment to the office of notary public under section 5 of The
Notary Public Law (act) (57 P.S. § 151). Section 5(b)(1) of the
act requires that the applicant may not have been convicted of or pled
guilty or nolo contendere to a felony or a lesser offense incompatible
with the duties of a notary public during the 5-year period preceding
the date of the application.
(b) Misdemeanor crimes involving a lack of honesty
or elements of falsehood and fraud (crimen falsi) are considered incompatible
with the duties of a notary public, regardless of the jurisdiction in
which crimes were committed.
(c) Under Pennsylvania law, misdemeanors include,
but are not limited to, the following:
(1) Forgery and fraudulent practices which includes
bad checks, insurance fraud and identity theft. See 18 Pa.C.S. Chapter
41 (relating to forgery and fraudulent practices).
(2) Theft which includes receiving stolen property
and retail theft. See 18 Pa.C.S. Chapter 39 (relating to theft and related
(3) Criminal conspiracy if the underlying crime is
incompatible. See 18 Pa.C.S. § 903 (relating to criminal conspiracy).
(4) Bribery. See 18 Pa.C.S. § 4701 (relating
to bribery in official and political matters).
(5) Perjury or falsification in official matter which
includes false swearing, unsworn falsification to authorities and tampering
with evidence. See 18 Pa.C.S. Chapter 49, Subchapter A (relating to
perjury and falsification in official matters).
(6) Obstructing governmental operations. See 18 Pa.C.S.
Chapter 51, Subchapter A (relating to definition of offenses generally).
(d) The Secretary will consider all similar crimes
committed in the courts of the United States or any other state, territory,
possession or country to be incompatible with the duties of a notary