Apostille Notarised Copies of Documents

Providing a complete apostille service includes the certification of documents by our Notary Public. We offer a total legalisation service to save you both time and money. SA documents signed, attested and Notarised are then issued with a South African Apostille Certificate.

When a document is legalised with an apostille it must have the stamp of a recognised body or the signature of a public official or Notary Public. Without the correct certification a document cannot be legalised.

Many documents have the required signature or stamp and do not need further certification. For example unabridges birth certificates, marriage certificates, normally do not need to be signed by a Notary Public

Other documents do need checking and certifying by a Notary Public. Common examples are personal papers and academic or qualification certificates. These are not typically signed by a recognised public official.

When (and relevant types of documentation) to follow the route of the Public Notary or Sworn Translator and Registrar of the High Court:

There may be other documents not listed above i.e. documents pertaining to customary marriages; travel documents (passport) or identity documents; or documents such as an affidavit, power of attorney; work contracts; and / or translations, which has to be verified by a Public Notary (Attorney registered with the High Court) or translated by a Sworn Translator (if this service is required), where after the verified documents must then be taken to the Registrar of the High Court of South Africa – in the same jurisdiction as the Public Notary or Sworn Translator, before submitting to the Legalisation Section:

Documents must be verified by a Public Notary (an Attorney registered at the High Court) or translated by a Sworn Translator (if the customer wishes the documentation to be translated) – of your choice. Note: The Public Notary will basically make a certified copy of the original document (which is the procedure, by which the copy of the original document, is “certified” as being “a true copy of the original document”).

The certified documents or translated documents must then be taken to the Registrar of the High Court of South Africa – in the same jurisdiction as the Public Notary / Sworn Translator. The Registrar will verify the signature and/or the seal of the Public Notary / Sworn Translator. (Note: Documents to be Apostilled (for countries that are signatory to the Apostille Convention) and Authenticated (for non-signatory countries).After Authentication (for non-signatory countries) by the High Court, the documents must then be submitted to the DIRCO – Legalisation Section for further authentication.

If a country is signatory to Apostille Convention, the High Court should issue and affix an Apostille Certificate to the document. This document should not be submitted to the DIRCO – Legalisation Section. If the Convention applies, an Apostille is the only formality that is required to establish the origin of the public document – no additional requirement may be imposed to authenticate the origin of the public document.

The signature of a Notary Public, Justice of the Peace or any court employee who is not a Registrar has to be legalised by a Magistrate, Additional Magistrate or Assistant Magistrate or by a Registrar or Assistant Registrar of any division of the High Court of South Africa within the jurisdiction of which such Justice of the Peace exercises his or her function or such Notary Public is in practice, before documents are submitted to the Legalisation Section for legalisation purposes.

Get Quotation

Complete the online quotation and order form for a no obligation Notary Public and Document Legalisation Quotation. Upload documents you want us to check using the incorporated facility in the form.

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Services

Walk in Notary Public and document legalisation services

Attend our office in-person on a Walk-In basis to have your document notarised or to obtain a certified true copy of your document or have your signature to a document attested. No appointments are needed. It is however best to check the availability of our Notary. Meet with our Notaries. Pay only after you’ve had you document notarised to your satisfaction. Card facilties available.

Please note that despite restrictions we remain OPEN as we are an essential business. Please wear a mask and make use of the available hand sanitizer.

Wat is the difference between an Attorney/Lawyer, Notary Public, and Commissioner of Oaths?

This question comes up often. It can certainly be confusing to distinguish between the designations of Lawyer, Notary Public, and Commissioner of Oaths. Before we explain the distinction, rest assured that our Notary has all three of these designations, which means that we can notarise or commission any kind of document in person.

In South Africa the terms Attorney and Lawyer can be used as synonoums. When someone gets admitted as an lawyer the also become admitted ex officio as a Commissioner of Oaths. A Commissioner of Oaths is someone that administers an oath, usually for the purpose of swearing or affirming the truth of a written statement such as an affidavit or statutory declaration.What’s the difference between “swearing” and “affirming”? Swearing is religious and affirming is secular.

It is possible, however, to become a Commissioner of Oaths without being a lawyer. For example, some people like police officers are provided with this designation. This is not the case for Notaries, however. In South Africas, in order to become a Notary Public an individual must first become a lawyer. An Notary is an South African Lawyer with an further qualification and admitted as such by the High Court.

Lawyers are not automatically given the “Notary Public” designation upon becoming lawyers. Rather, this additional designation is something that South African Lawyers must qualify for. This is not the case in the United States, for example, where almost anyone can become a Notary without having to go to law school and become a lawyer first. This approach enables more people to become notaries, which makes it easier to find a notary public. The South African approach is much more prudent and is intended to mitigate the risk of fraud and malpractice by limiting the designation of Notary Public to qualified lawyers only.

Legalisation and Authentication of Notarised Documents

We routinely notarise documents that are intended for use outside of South Africa. This is done either by apostille or authentication certificate. The Legalization and Authentication Process can be is complex and requires coordination with the High Court, DIRCO and Embassy of the country relevant to the transaction (i.e. usually the country to which the documents are sent). The purpose of this process is to verify that the Notary Public is a legitimate body of authority registered with Legal Practioce Council of South Africa.

We deliver an all inclusive service from Notary Public to Document Legalisation for any country and sending your legalised documents to almost any destination in the world.

DEFINITIONS

Notarisation / Notarise

In broad terms, an South African Notary Public can do the following:

1. Witness someone sign something (e.g. an affidavit or a letter).

2. 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 "Notarised Copy".

3. Verify an individual's identity (e.g. for the the purpose of immigration or employment documents).

Although Notaries are also practicing Attorneys it's best they cannot provide legal advice, or any advice for that matter that can be construed as legal advice pertaining to the document. Its best to acquire independent legal advice before signing any documentation.

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 documents can be properly notarised. No appointment is necessary.It is however best to check the availability of our Notary with the office.

True Copy or Notarised copy

What is it? 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.

Notarised / Attested Affidavits / Declaration / Affirmation

What is it? An affidavit is a written declaration of facts that is sworn by an “deponent” in front of a Notary Public.

Why are they needed? Evidence for court matters or other legal procedures often needs to come in the form of an affidavit. A notary is required to verify the identity of the “deponent” before notarising 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 notarise 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.

In turn the notarised document can be legalised for use by Apostille or Authentication Certificate. We have an all inclusive Notary and Document Service from our Pretoria Offices. We also have a traveling Notary and Document Legalisation Service for Corporates.

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 South Africa 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 your airline, travel agent, or government officials in the country you are visiting to see if it is required. Traveling 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 notarise 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. Contact us for more information.