What is it?
A Notary Public is a person authorized by the government to administer oaths and declarations. He/She verifies the identity of the signing parties and their signatures on the documents in question. The Notary witnesses all signatures, and signs and seals the document with an official seal of office. What is the difference between a notary public and lawyer?
In Broad Terms, An Ontario Notary Public Can Do The Following:
- Witness Someone Sign Something (E.g. An Affidavit Or A Letter).
- Make A Photocopy Of An Original Document And Certify That The Photocopy Is A True Copy Of The Original (E.g. A Diploma).This Is Referred To As A “Certified Copy” Or Sometimes “Notarized Copy”.
- Verify An Individual’s Identity (E.g. For The The Purpose Of Immigration Or Employment Documents).
Notaries Cannot Provide Legal Advice, Or Any Advice For That Matter That Can Be Construed As Legal Advice. We Can Notarize Your Documents On A Walk-in Basis. We Make The Process Simple And Quick For You. Why Wait Around For Inconvenient Appointment Times? With Us, In Just Minutes, Your Forms Can Be Properly Notarized. No Appointment Is Necessary.
- Role and Responsibility of Notary Public: Our primary function as a Notary Public is to witness individuals signing documents. We are responsible for affirming that the individual known by the name on the document has indeed signed it. Our role does not extend to validating the content or the factual accuracy of the documents in question. This is primarily due to the impossibility of verifying such information and also because it is outside the jurisdiction granted to us under the Notaries Act. Consequently, the act of notarization should be understood as a testament to the execution of a document rather than an endorsement of its contents.
- Scope of Legal Advice: As an organization, we don’t offer legal advice to our clients nor do we operate as their legal representatives. It should be noted that our interaction with clients doesn’t establish a solicitor-client relationship, nor do we maintain clients in the traditional sense.
- Verification of Notarization: We do not affirm the act of notarization by discussing our verification process with external parties or third parties. Considering the high volume of documents we notarize on a monthly basis, such a process would be unfeasible. Instead, we employ the use of notary seals as evidence of notarization. This eliminates the need for additional verbal or written confirmation from us, as the seal itself serves as a standalone verification tool.
- Client Confidentiality: In accordance with regulatory bodies’ guidelines, we are obligated to maintain client confidentiality. Typically, we are unable to confirm or deny whether specific documents correspond with those in our records. However, the necessity for additional verification from us is generally non-existent. The original notarized document can be examined to establish the validity of the notarization. Physical documents containing our embossed seal are difficult to falsify, offering a reliable means of authentication. Conversely, digital documents are more prone to manipulation and forgery, which is why we place emphasis on the importance of original, sealed documents.
- Identity Verification: A core part of our practice includes verifying a client’s identity before proceeding with notarization. This means that if a document has been notarized by us, we have examined the client’s ID, recorded the relevant details, matched the name on the ID with the one on the document, and witnessed the client sign the document in person. Hence, a notarized document stands as sufficient proof that the signer’s identity has been verified, eliminating the need for additional verification from us.
True Copy, Certified copy, affirmed copy, or Notarized Copy
What is it?
“True Copy”, “Certified Copy”, and “Notarized Copy” all refer to the same thing. This is a photocopy of an original document which is verified by a notary public to be an accurate copy of the original. This is done when an official document (such as an ID, government papers, educational credentials etc.) needs to be provided/submitted to a third party. Often the original document is one of kind and it becomes impractical to give it away. Normal photocopies could be doctored or altered. The True Copy is objective evidence of the accuracy of the image
How is it done?
To do this, the notary must compare the original document to the copy (we can do the photocopying). He/she verifies that the copy is accurate, unaltered and all details match the original.
We are happy to certify true copies. This is done quickly and easily. We are here to help you with your true copy needs.
An affirmed copy is different. This is where the client swears that the copy is a true copy of the original and the notary administers the oath. An affirmed copy may be necessary in cases where the client does not have access to an original document. For more information about this please check out our blog post.
What is it?
An affidavit is a written declaration of facts that is sworn by an “affiant” in front of a Notary Public or Commissioner of Oaths.
Why are they needed?
Evidence for court matters or other legal procedures often needs to come in the form of an affidavit. They are valuable because when someone swears an oath, or makes an affirmation, before a Notary Public it becomes a criminal offence to lie in the contents of the affidavit. Thus, third parties have an additional level of security when receiving information in this form. Further, A notary is required to verify the identity of the “affiant” before notarizing the document. In this way, the person receiving the document is assured that the paper was in fact signed by the correct person and not by an imposter.
We can notarize your affidavits quickly and easily. For a small additional fee, we can also draft affidavits for your convenience. This can be done on the spot – without further appointments being necessary. The whole process is quick and easy for you.
What is it?
A Statutory Declaration is similar to an affidavit. It is a written declaration of facts by a “declarant” However, unlike an affidavit; it is not a sworn document. Rather than swear an oath, a “declaration” is administered by the Notary Public. It has the same legal effect of an affidavit and it is a criminal offence to lie in a statutory declaration. It is often used when one does not wish to swear an oath (such as when the declarant does not wish to swear to God about the documents’ contents). As in an affidavit, the Notary verifies the declarant’s identity thereby providing security to the receiving party of the authenticity of the signature.
We can notarize affidavits quickly and easily. For a small additional fee, we can also draft statutory declarations for your convenience. This can be done on the spot – without further appointments being necessary. The whole process is quick and easy for you.
Letter of Invitation
What is it?
Sometimes when one applies for a Visa to enter Canada, the government requests a “Letter of Invitation” from a resident of Canada. The person inviting the guest to Canada provides information about his/herself and the visa applicant.
How is it done? A Notary administers an oath/affirmation, witnesses the party’s signature and notarizes the document. Though a letter of invitation cannot guarantee the receipt of a visa to Canada, it is often a government requirement.
We can notarize your Letter of Invitation quickly and easily. For a small additional fee, we can also draft letters of invitation for you. No appointments are necessary and the whole process should only take a few minutes.
Consent to Travel
What is it?
Child abduction has become a growing concern for governments around the world. For this reason, “Consent to Travel” letters are required by an increasing number of governments. When a child travels without one parent, the remaining parent gives written permission for the child/children to leave the country. It is often required that the document be notarized to verify the identity of the parties involved. This document would be presented to various authorities in Canada and elsewhere as evidence that the child/children travelling abroad have not been abducted by their accompanying adult.
How do you know if it is needed?
It is best to check with Canadian Foreign Affairs, your airline, travel agent, or government officials in the country you are visiting to see if it is required. Travelling without a consent to travel can lead to travel delays or even denial of exit/entry by one or more of your group.
We are happy to notarize your consent to travel letter. It is a quick and easy process for you. Not sure where to find one? For a small additional fee we can draft your consent to travel on the spot – without an appointment.