The Office of the Secretary of State is designated through the State Constitution and North Dakota Century Code to be the official recipient of various documents and keep certain official records for the State. These responsibilities include:

  • Being the custodian of the Great Seal and other official state documents, which often means transferring documents to state archives for safekeeping
  • Documenting and maintaining a register of the official acts of the Governor
  • Serving as Secretary for the Emergency Commission – receiving requests and keeping minutes
  • Receiving, recording, and filing original bills and resolutions from each legislative assembly
  • Distributing North Dakota Century Code, North Dakota Administrative Code, and North Dakota Session Laws, as well as legislative resolutions
  • Maintaining the filing location for public meeting notices for state agencies, boards, and commissions

Official Acts

According to NDCC § 54-09-02, the Secretary of State keeps a record of official acts of the Governor. This involves the Secretary of State attesting the Governor’s signature and adding the Great Seal to commissions and other public records to which the official signature of the governor is required.

Official acts of the governor include appointments, proclamations, executive orders, easements, extraditions, deeds, pardons, and tribal agreements.

Executive orders and proclamations are available on the Office of Governor website. 

Oaths of Office

According to NDCC § 44-05-04, original oaths of office must be filed with the appropriate jurisdiction as indicated below:

Secretary of State

  • State officials 
  • Members of state boards 
  • Members of districts or political subdivisions that are larger than a county (Example: Soil and Water Conservation Districts)

County Auditor

  • County officials or members of a county board

City Auditor

  • City officials or members of city boards


Request an Oath of Office

Copies of oaths of office are available upon request. Search of record and copy fees apply.

Accordion Section Title
Who is Required to Take an Oath

Who is Required to Take an Oath

Civil officers (also known as public officers) in the state must take and subscribe to the oath prescribed in Section 4 of Article XI of the Constitution of North Dakota before undertaking their duties. 

According to NDCC § 44-01-05, civil officers include:

  • Every elected official and any individual appointed by such elected official
  • Any individual appointed by the governor and required by NDCC § 16.1-09-02 to file a statement of interests with the Secretary of State
  • Appointed member of any state authority, board, bureau, commission, and council
  • Appointed head of any state agency and agency division, whether the individual serves with or without compensation

Note - Except for an individual appointed to fill a vacancy in the legislative assembly, the term civil officer does not include any individual receiving a legislative appointment.

Accordion Section Title
Oath Language

Oath Language

The ND Oath of Office form is used to administer oaths The oath is as follows:

"I ________ of ___________, ND do solemnly swear (or affirm as the case may be) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of North Dakota; and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of _________ according to the best of my ability, so help me God (under pains and penalties of perjury)" 

Accordion Section Title
Who Can Administer Oaths

Who Can Administer Oaths?

NDCC § 44-05-01, designates the following officers  as authorized to administer oaths:

  • Each justice of the Supreme Court, each judge of the district court, the clerk of the Supreme Court, and the clerk's deputy
  • The clerk of the district court, county auditor, recorder, and the deputy of each such officer within that officer's county
  • Each county commissioner and public administrator within that officer's county
  • Notary public anywhere in the state
  • Each city auditor, municipal judge, and township clerk within that officer's own city or township
  • Each sheriff and the deputy sheriff within the sheriff's county in the cases prescribed by law
  • Other officers in the cases prescribed by law or by rule of the Supreme Court