There's a Notary near you
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The Notary Public's role
A Notary Public is an attorney who has an intimate knowledge of certain acts, and the processes prescribed therein, and who is legally empowered to officially witness signatures, take statements and certify the validity of documents.
Being held to a higher standard of care than an attorney, a notary is a specialist in the drafting and/or legalisation of certain documents. The legality of which can be positively assumed, drawn from the fact that the document was notarially executed.
Documents to Notarise/Certify:
- Marriage Certificates
- Birth Certificates
- Death Certificates
- Single status Certificates
- Divorce Certificates
- Police Clearance Certificates
- Powers of Attorney
- Copies of ID's or Passports
- Educational documents
Notarisation, Authentication & Legalisation
Certain documents are required by law to be notarially executed, in which case a notary has to draft the document which is then signed and witnessed in the presence of the notary. These documents are known as notarial deeds, and include, inter alia, ante- and postnuptial contracts, deeds of servitude, deeds of cession of usufruct, notarial leases, trust deeds of donation and notarial bonds. Such documents are kept in the notary’s safekeeping and the notary is also required to keep a protocol and register of all the documents drafted by and attested to before him.
Besides notarial deeds, a notary is furthermore needed for the noting of protests regarding a bill of exchange as well as Notary Apostille & legalisation services which include attestation, authentication and notarising of documents for use in foreign countries.
Legalisation of documents means that official (public) documents are affixed, sealed and signed either with an Apostille Certificate to be attached to certain documents which are to be used internationally (where countries are party to The Hague Convention, to which South Africa is a party), or with a Certificate of Authentication (where countries are not party to The Hague Convention).