HELP! I NEED A NOTARY AND DON’T KNOW WHERE TO START
Right! You’re about to do something that involves a foreign country, whether it be moving there, working there, or dealing with assets there. You’ve had a document or a set of instructions from the relevant authority and often there will be an instruction to have a notary public sign or witness the document. The chances are that you have rarely heard of a notary public before this point and are therefore not sure where to begin.
A notary public, generally speaking, is a legally trained individual who has the role of attesting, authenticating, and certifying documents under their seal and signature for use anywhere in the world.
For instance, if you have a property in Florida that needs to be sold and you cannot go to Florida to sign the papers, the relevant papers can be signed in England or Wales before the notary. If you are starting a job in China, the authorities in China will need sight of your qualification certificates but will only verify them as authentic if a notary has certified them as authentic.
And it gets better. The receiving country might also want something called an ‘apostille’ attached to the notary’s certificate. The apostille is a small certificate that can be attached to a UK document enabling that document to be recognised outside of the UK. Most European countries require this.
The best place to start is to contact your local solicitor practice to see if they have any notary public working there. Failing that, the Notaries Society website is useful for finding a notary local to you:
A notary will insist on a face to face meeting with you. You must provide satisfactory evidence of ID to confirm you are who you say you are. The notary will usually sign and seal the documents at the meeting for you to take away…subject to payment of the notary’s fee.
If you need any further assistance with what a notary does or if you need one, contact me and I will do my very best to assist.
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