The power to appoint notaries public is vested in the clerks of the superior courts and may be exercised by them at any time. (O.C.G.A. §45-17-1.1)
Any individual desiring to be a notary public shall submit an application to the clerk of superior court of the county in which the individual resides or, when applying under the provisions of Code Section §45-17-7, to the clerk of superior court of the county in which the individual works or has a business. The applicant shall sign and swear or affirm as outlined in paragraph (2) of subsection (b) of this Code section to the truthfulness of the application which shall state:
(1) That the applicant resides or works or has a business in the county of application and the address of the residence or business;
(2) That the applicant is at least 18 years old;
(3) That the applicant can read and write the English language;
(4) All denials, revocations, suspensions, restrictions, or resignations of a notary commission held by the applicant; and
(5) All criminal convictions of the applicant, including any plea of nolo contendere, except minor traffic violations.
(b) In addition to the application require din subsection (a) of this Code section, every applicant for appointment as a notary public shall also submit to the clerk of superior court of the county in which the individual makes an application:
(1) Endorsements from two persons who are not relatives of the applicant, who are at least 18 years old, and who reside in the county in which the individual makes an application.
(2) A declaration of the applicant which shall have been signed in the presence of a commissioned notary public of this state.
Grant or denial of commission
(a) After an applicant submits to the clerk of superior court of the county of application, endorsements, and declaration of the applicant as required in Code Section §45-17-2.1, the clerk of superior court shall either grant or deny a commission as a notary public within ten days following the applicant’s submission of the necessary documents.
(b) The clerk of superior court may at his discretion deny a commission to an applicant based on any of the following documents:
(1) The applicant’s criminal history;
(2) Revocation, suspension, or restriction of any notary commission or professional license issued to the applicant by this or any other state; or
(3) The commission in this or any state of any act enumerated in subsection (a) of Code Section §45-17-15, whether or not criminal penalties or commission suspension or revocation resulted.
(c) Any applicant who is denied a notarial commission by the clerk of superior court shall upon demand be allowed a hearing and adjudication before the superior court clerk with a right of de novo appeal to the superior court, such appeal to be determined by the court without the intervention of a jury.