What Types of Documents are Commonly Notarised by a Notary Public in Australia?

If you have documents that you need to send overseas it is most likely that they will need to be witnessed and certified by a notary public.

A notary public is a legal specialist who is authorised to witness and certify, or “notarise” documents intended for use overseas. The purpose of the notarisation of documents is that they can be issued with an Apostille or an Authentication Certificate. These documents can then be used in foreign countries without more complicated legal processes being involved.

Typical documents for which notarisation is sought.

There are a wide range of document types for which notarisation may be required.

Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney or Letter of Authority is used to appoint someone to handle your personal, business or financial matters on your behalf. If the Power of Attorney is to be used overseas, the document will need to be signed, attested and notarised.

Personal Identification Documents

Photo ID documents such as passports and drivers’ licenses will generally be acceptable forms of identification for most countries. Other forms of ID may also be accepted, such as Medicare card, utility bills or council and water rates notices. The Notary Public will need to personally identify the individual to whom the identification documents belong, then certify and notarise the documents.

Personal Certificates (called Public Documents) issued in Australia

Public documents include birth certificates, marriage certificates, death certificates, change of name certificates and Australian citizenship certificates. These certificates are issued by the relevant Australian government registries either in each state or by the federal government directly.

Visa and immigration documents

If you need to prove your Australian immigration status to a foreign entity, you’ll require your immigration documents will need notarisation. These documents can include Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) notifications and visa grant notices, and international movement records.

Overseas travel permission for children

If children are travelling overseas without both parents, they may require additional paperwork. Circumstances can include;

when a child is travelling with one parent,

when they are travelling alone, or;

when they are with someone who isn’t a parent or guardian, such as a grandparent or school group.

This is especially the case when the child is under the age of 15, or when the parent or guardian has a different surname to the child. Also, some countries do not recognise dual nationality. If your child is a dual national you may want to seek additional legal advice about the requirements before travelling.

Documentation may include consent letters, adoption papers, birth certificates, guardianship certificates or custody agreements.

Court forms and legal documents

There are a substantial range of court forms and legal documents which may be used for court proceedings overseas. Anything from witness statements, statutory declarations and affidavits through to court transcripts and other court files can be required. Your notary public can attest and notarise these documents for you.

Court issued documents

Court issued documents may include divorce orders, custody orders, consent orders or court judgements.

Deceased estate and probate

Dealing with a deceased estate and probate is usually a difficult time for everyone involved. This can be even more stressful when overseas parties are involved. Our notary public can assist you through the process of authenticating the will and notarising any necessary documentation.

Financial documents and bank statements

Financial documents include bank statements issued by an Australian bank, official ATO tax records or other financial statements. Financial documents can be required for many purposes overseas, both personal and commercial.

Foreign pensions (Life Certificates)

If you receive a foreign pension and have been asked to prove that you are alive, we can assist. A certified and notarised Proof of Life Certificate will generally be satisfactory for the organisation in charge of your pension.

Real estate documentation and property transfers

Property transfers typically involve a lot of paperwork. If you are selling or purchasing property overseas, then much of the documents may need notarisation. Standard types of documentation for property transactions include real estate contracts, property deeds and loan documents. Other documents commonly associated with property transactions are personal IDs, Powers of Attorney and leasing agreements.

Personal or commercial contracts or agreements

Whether for personal or business purposes, if you have a contract or agreement required for foreign use, you’ll need to get it notarised. These can include vendor contracts, supplier contracts and commercial lease agreements.

Australian company documents

If an Australian company or business has international dealings, they will likely need the services of a notary public. Documents often needing attestation and notarisation are articles of incorporation, certificate of good standing, constitutions, and copies of minutes, resolutions and memorandums.

For public information, company documents must be obtained directly from ASIC. Other documentation from the corporate register must be produced by a company director.

Employment documents

If you’ve been employed in Australia and require any of your employment records for use in another country, they will need to be verified with the issuing employer, attested and notarised. Documents can include company payslips, referrals, references and recommendations amongst others.

Education documents from Australian institutions

If you have studied in Australia and require education documents for say, a foreign job application you’ll need your documents notarised. Common forms of documents issued by Australian educational institutions are academic transcripts and university testamurs, enrolment forms, college certificates and school reports.

Professional qualification documents – Public Documents

If you have a professional qualification issued by an Australian accredited organisation, it will need to be notarised if you wish to use it in a foreign country. Professional qualification accreditations are issued from organisations such as CPA Australian, the Institute of Engineers and the Australian Law Society, to name a few.

Medical documents and reports

If you are sending medical certificate or reports to a foreign country, you may need to get them notarised. This can include doctor’s letters, prescriptions, pathology results or other medical reports. Documents will need to be verified with the issuing doctor, hospital or medical centre before they can be attested and notarised.

Criminal records

Some countries will require that a police check or criminal history check be performed and a Police Clearance Certificate issued. Others may also require that your fingerprints be taken and verified. A notary public will be able to attest and notarise these documents for you.

GP Legal Notary Public

GP Legal are a Notary Public and legal firm based in Dee Why on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. We provide a wide range of legal services including document notarisation. Call us to book an appointment for notarisation services or other legal matters.