Place a Legal Notice Ad in the Newspaper

RaeAnne Meyer-Joiner

A public notice (or Legal Notice) is a type of classified ad that is used to keep the public informed. We’re delighted to present our all-inclusive guide on how to place a public notice ad in a newspaper. Whether you’re an individual, a business, or a government agency, our guide will provide you with step-by-step instructions and valuable insights to help you publish public notices and maximize their visibility. By following our guide, you’ll be able to effectively book public notice ads and ensure they receive optimal exposure. We aim to empower you to navigate the process with ease and achieve your desired¬†outcome. To¬†place a legal ad in any publication call us at¬† (813) 920-0197 or send an us a email to¬†

 First and foremost, things like government contracts, permits, foreclosures, community information, and even environmental conditions that may affect them or their community. Additionally, a public notice that is not run on time can have serious repercussions. This could involve a lot of people on various levels. Above all else, it is important they are run as scheduled and free of mistakes. It is important to realize that they must also follow specific requirements. For instance, when you place a legal ad in the newspaper, all notices are placed in paid daily papers. They cannot be run in a free paper. Plus, legal ads are also typically not accepted on flyer inserts or layout ads. ( News Media Association )

 How do I place a legal notice ad in the newspaper or digital?

Be that it may seem, placing a legal notice ad in the newspaper doesn’t have to be a burdensome process.¬† Keep this in mind if you need to place a legal notice ad in the newspaper and you wonder why you have to go through all this tedious work for something that you are not sure anyone will want to read.¬† You will rest assured that public and legal notices running in newspapers are a very old tradition that has to do with keeping the general public informed about what’s happening in your local community.

By all means, if you need to place a legal notice ad in the newspaper and you are not sure of what steps you need to take to do so it is important to make sure that you understand the goal of a legal notice ad. Above all else,  it is to get people to act and participate and not to get people to buy a product. Because of this, legal notice ads can be somewhat longer and, therefore, more expensive than a small 4-line classified ad.  In many cases, it can be helpful to recruit an advertising agency that specializes in these types of advertisements to assist in the writing and placement of these types of ads for you.

person thumbing through a newspaper labor certification advertising requirements place legal ads legal notice ad in the newspaper

Steps to Placing a Legal Notice in the newspaper or online.

  1. The first thing you must remember is you must determine the area where your ad needs to run.  This may be your city, state, or in some cases, ads will run in nationwide papers.
  2.  Secondly, you must contact the paper or an agency that specializes in placing legal notices.
  3. Next, begin drafting your ad  for information on how to write your ad (see additional section on what information to include below)
  4. Then you must, determine which days you will need your ad to run. This may be a certain number of days or weekends.
  5. Ask for a quote.
  6. Approve the ad or reduce the length of your ad; you may abbreviate whenever necessary.
  7. Submit or confirm ad placement to run. (It must be remembered to ask for proof. This way, you can see how the ad will appear in the newspaper.)
  8.  Lastly, request tear sheets after the ad has run.

How do I write a legal notice ad for the newspaper?

  1. Above all, you want to ensure that the necessary information is clearly stated. Include any dates, locations, or contact information.
  2. Let the public know how or if they can participate. Include information about any hearings, auctions, or public meetings available to attend.
  3. Abbreviate whenever possible. Because legal notices are meant to benefit the general public, do not over-abbreviate. This way, there is less likelihood that the ad can be misunderstood.
  4. Request a proof of the ad. Proofs allow you to see how it will appear in the newspaper.

Writing a legal notice ad for the newspaper follows many of the same rules as any other type of ad. However, there is one main difference. The difference between a public or legal notice versus a regular classified ad is the standard “call to action.” Most ads use a “call to action” to encourage readers to buy a service or product. For a legal or public notice, this is not the same. Engaging them is the call to action for a legal or public notice.¬†

In these ads, the goal is to inform or get a person to act.  Sometimes, the action may be for a person to attend a hearing.  Or to merely be aware of a change in their community.  Often this information can mean that public or legal notices can be somewhat longer than a standard 4-line sales ad.

The five basic principles of effective Legal Notice Ad for the Newspaper

This checklist serves as a brief reminder of the basic principles of a good public notice.

  • A legal notice should be issued before the meeting or hearing.
  • It should also be concise and highlight economic and environmental issues and decisions concerning public concern. As well as their implications.
  • The notice should indicate how participation at the meeting or hearing will relate to subsequent decisions and resolving issues.
  • Someone with experience in writing public information should develop or review it.
  • ¬†The notice should be distributed through various means, such as direct mailing to organizations and individuals, prominent media coverage, phone call networking, personal letters, or other word-of-mouth measures, to ensure maximum public notification.

To sum it up, it is important to note that the goal of public notification is not just to fill the meeting room. It is to inform and engage individuals and interests likely to be affected by agency actions and decisions. Thus enabling them to participate constructively in the agency program.

Additional things to consider

After ensuring that the event being sponsored fulfills a specific requirement or has some significance and scheduling it for a convenient time and place, measure the public notice against the following checklist:

  • ¬†Will it be prominently displayed in the media and posted in advance of the event to be highly visible? Will a press release accompany the notice? Are other media contacts planned, such as a press conference, reporters’ briefing, or feature article?
  • Is there an emphasis on why the event is being held, including issues, decisions, and effects?
  • Is there a focus on the importance of citizen attendance by explaining how participation will affect decisions?
  • Has a professional who is experienced with writing and placing notices prepared or reviewed the notice to avoid irrelevant information and jargon, and ensure that the notice is brief, easy to read, informative, and appealing?

If meeting posters are used in addition to written notices, do these posters contain wording and graphics that will attract viewers’ attention?

  • Will the notice be mailed directly to appropriate individuals and organizations?
  • What other direct contact can be used to notify the public?
  • Does the notice provide a staff contact who can provide more detailed information upon request?

As an example, consider a notice mailed to interested citizens on an agency mailing list.

Legal references are included at the end of the notice, and capitalization and underlining are used to highlight important points and break up gray paragraphs of type.

By all means, the language used in the notice is closer to plain English than most official notices.

However, the notice could be further improved by using a better title and a more inclusive term like “persons” instead of “parties.”


Here are several things to keep in mind when determining where and when to place your notice.

The National Newspaper Association has also determined that a public notice should follow several other guidelines.

  • It should be published in a medium independent of the government or other entity compelled to provide notice.
  • Must be verifiable so that citizens can satisfy themselves that notice was properly given. An affidavit from the newspaper attesting to the type and date of publication is the typical verification, and these are often used in litigation to demonstrate that due process requirements were met.
  • It should be archivable so that future generations can retrieve it.
  • Must be accessible to a broad range of people. Surveys demonstrate that a wide majority of citizens believe public notices should be in newspapers.

Additionally, the call to action of a public or legal notice is also not the same as it would be for an advertisement that sells a product or service.  Furthermore  when are you are getting ready to place a public notice ad, consider the fact that for a public notice to be successful, the intent of the ad is to get someone to act or participate in a function or to be made aware of a change instead of trying to persuade a person to buy or directly respond to the ad.  This can mean an ad that is longer than the typical four-line classified ad.

Why are Public notices so important? Why do we place legal notice ads in the newspaper?

‚ÄúPublic notices are one of the few regular and official communication channels that exist between levels of government and citizens. Public notice laws additionally regulate the way in which government communications with citizens.‚ÄĚ ( )

In Fact, there have actually been laws that dictate the necessity of placing legal notice ads in the newspaper for quite some time.  Laws have always stated the necessity of information. Especially when it pertains to community and government changes. It is necessary to share it with people in an easily accessible way. This helps to keep the general population informed about things that may impact them on a variety of levels. By placing legal notice ads in Newspapers the community is able to find out any changes that are taking place. They will also be kept informed about how to participate in the issues that may affect them on a local level.

For more information on Public notices or ad placement services

Contact Us

What Now?

If you need to place a legal notice ad in the newspaper and you are still not sure of what steps you need to take to do so it is important to make sure that you understand the goal of a legal notice ad is to get people to act and participate and not to get people to buy a product. Because of this, legal notice ads can be somewhat longer and therefore more expensive than a small 4 line classified ad.  In many cases, it can be helpful to recruit an advertising agency that specializes in these types of advertisements to assist in the writing and placement of these types of ads for you.

Our Legal Notice Experts will work with you all the way through the process
To expedite your ad placement please have the following information ready ..

Please provide us with your full name, billing address, telephone number, and email address. Additionally, please provide us with the exact text you would like to appear in the ad, or we can help you write this. Please also have ready any necessary images, such as maps or logos, If you have specific dates you would like the ad to run, keeping in mind our deadlines. If your ad needs to run multiple times due to a state law, please indicate how many times and on which dates you would like it to be published.

All ads are automatically published in the appropriate newspaper and online publication(s). To place a legal ad in any publication call us at  (813) 920-0197 or send an us a email to

For more information about placing public and legal notices or writing a legal notice ad.

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