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A complete service for International Documentation

Notary Public

Associate Solicitors, Alice Toop and Bronwyn White, are fully qualified Notary Publics offering professional, efficient and friendly notary public services across Bournemouth, Woking, Dorset & Hampshire.

What is a Notary Public?

A Notary Public is a specialist lawyer who holds an internationally recognised public office and is authorised to authenticate documents for use abroad.

The notarial profession is the oldest and smallest branch of the legal profession – there are only approximately 750 notaries public in England & Wales.

The signature and seal of a Notary Public is recognised by the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office and also by various High Commissions and Embassies throughout the world.

The notarial profession is an entirely separate part of the legal profession to that of a solicitor and Alice’s two roles are distinct and subject to separate rules, regulations and requirements.

Alice has been appointed as a Notary Public by the Court of Faculties of the Archbishop of Canterbury, and she is regulated by the Master of the Faculties through the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

When will you need a Notary Public?

You need a Notary Public if you are told by a lawyer or other representative abroad that your document needs to be “notarised”.

A Notary Public will be able to authenticate your document so that it will legally recognised, and can be used, abroad - essentially facilitating an international transaction. They can also assist with arranging for UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office and embassy/consular legalisation.

Examples of when you may need a Notary Public include:

  • executing a foreign power of attorney.
  • incorporating a foreign company.
  • trading with foreign companies / exporting to foreign countries.
  • buying or selling a property abroad.
  • planning to work, study, move or get married abroad.
  • employing someone who lives abroad.
  • executing a foreign will.
  • involved in litigation abroad.
  • dealing with the administration of the estate of someone who lived abroad or who owned foreign property / assets.
  • adopting a child who currently lives abroad.

What services can we provide?

Alice provides a full range of notary public services to businesses and individuals who are based in Bournemouth, Dorset and Hampshire. She can also arrange for documents to be apostilled by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and legalised by embassies and consulates.

For Business:

  • Preparation and execution of corporate powers of attorney.
  • Authenticating company and business documents.
  • Authenticating documents relating to property and corporate transactions abroad.
  • Authenticating documents required to open a foreign bank account.
  • Attestation of Certificates of Good Standing.
  • Verification of company director/secretary signatures.
  • Notarising affidavits and statutory declarations for foreign proceedings.
  • Notarising documents relating to the assignment or registration of trademarks.
  • Arranging for apostille, consular and embassy legalisation.

For Individuals:

  • Preparation and execution of powers of attorney for individuals.
  • Authenticating personal documents and information for immigration or emigration purposes, or to apply to marry or to work abroad.
  • Notarising copies of identification, for example to open a bank account abroad.
  • Providing certified copies of documents such as exam and degree certificates.
  • Assisting with the purchase or sale of land overseas.
  • Assisting with travel consents for minor children.
  • Assisting with overseas adoptions.
  • Authenticating foreign wills and providing documents to deal with the administration of the estate of a person who was residing abroad or owned property abroad.
  • Arranging for apostille, consular and embassy legalisation.

Common Stages of Notarial Documentation Certification Services

Each notarial matter is different and the requirements and timescales will vary greatly according to whether the client is a private individual or a company and in particular according to the processing times of third parties such as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, legalisation agents, translating agencies and couriers.

Some of the typical key stages are likely to include:

  • Receiving and reviewing the documents to be notarised together with any instructions you have received.
  • Liaising with your advisors or the relevant body abroad to obtain the necessary information to deal with the document.
  • Checking the identity, capacity and authority of the person who is to sign the document.
  • If a document is to be certified, checking with the issuing authority that it is genuine.
  • Meeting with the signatory to verify their identity, ascertain they understand what they are signing, that they are doing so of their own free will and to ensure the document is executed correctly.
  • Endorsing or drafting and affixing a notarial certificate to the document.
  • Arranging for the legalisation of the document.
  • Arranging for the storage of copies of all notarised documents and other paperwork in accordance with the requirements of the Notarial Practice Rules 2019.

What if I need an ‘Apostille’ or my document needs to be ‘legalised’?

Recipients in some countries require verification of the notary public’s signature and seal.

When this is required, ‘legalisation’ must be obtained before the document is accepted abroad.

For some countries, it is sufficient for an apostille to be affixed to the document. An apostille is a certificate from the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office on behalf of the UK Government which confirms that the notary public’s signature and seal is genuine.

For other countries, embassy/consular legalisation is also required which is when the recipient requires the notarial act to bear a legalisation stamp from the consular department of the diplomatic mission representing the country where the document is to be used.
In any event, a notary public should be able to assist you with this process.

Contact Alice or Bronwyn, our notary publics, today

If you require notary public services then please do not hesitate to contact Alice by email alice@agt-notarypublic.co.uk or telephone 07780 812793 or email Bronwyn at b.white@duttongregory.co.uk or telephone 01483746367.

PLEASE NOTE: Alice’s notarial work is undertaken by “Alice Grace Toop Notary Public” which is completely independent of Dutton Gregory LLP and is regulated through the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury and not by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.