What Does It Mean to “Notarize” a Document?

May 14, 2024


Person writing on white paper.

Notarizing a document is a crucial step in ensuring that certain legal documents are valid, authentic, and can be relied upon by third parties. However, the concept of notarization can be confusing for many individuals who are not well-versed in legal matters. As a trusted Notary Public, we can help simplify the notarization process and provide the professional assistance you need.

In this article, we will delve into the meaning of notarization, its purpose, and the types of documents that require notarization. We will also explore how our team at Lilian Cazacu Notary Corporation can provide expert notary services to ensure the legal validity and authenticity of your important documents.

1. The Meaning of Notarization

Notarization is the act of a Notary Public certifying the authenticity, accuracy, and validity of a document or witnessing someone solemnly declaring (or making an oath) about the truthfulness of certain facts. This process often entails verifying the identities of the parties involved, ensuring their understanding of the document's content, and witnessing the signing of the document. The notary then affixes their seal or stamp, confirming that the notarization has taken place.

2. The Purpose of Notarization

Notarization serves several essential purposes in the legal realm:

a) Identity Verification: Notarization confirms the identities of the document signatories, ensuring that they are indeed the parties they claim to be.

b) Willingness and Awareness: A notary ensures that all parties signing the document are doing so willingly and with full understanding of its contents.

c) Fraud Prevention: Notarization serves as a deterrent to fraud by publicly certifying that a document is authentic and accurately represents the intentions of the parties involved.

d) Legal Efficacy: Many legal documents require notarization to be legally binding and enforceable.

3. Types of Documents That Require Notarization

There are several types of documents that commonly require notarization:

a) Real Estate Documents: While many contracts and agreements do not require being notarized, the land title forms and documents, together with some Statutory Declarations and mortgage documents, require to be notarized, before they must be submitted and registered into the Land Title system.

b) Powers of Attorney: While people refer to signing the POAs as “notarizing”, it normally entails an entire process of gathering information, interviewing the parties, and drafting the documents, before they are actually “notarized”. While we do not just “notarize” Powers of Attorney that were not prepared by us, we can notarize the signatures of the appointed Attorneys, if the Donor of the PoA has signed it already. Notarizing an Attorney’s signature qualifies that the designated individual is aware of their legal responsibilities and that the principal has willingly granted them this authority.

c) Wills and Trusts: Although notarizing Wills and trusts may not be legally required, it may actually provide an extra layer of authenticity by ensuring that the testator is of sound mind and the document communicates their intentions.

d) Affidavits and Statutory Declarations: These sworn statements made under oath in front of a notary or another authorized official help guarantee the accuracy and truthfulness of the information contained within.

e) International Documents: Notarization may be required for documents intended for use in foreign countries, such as travel consent forms, immigration documents, or foreign business contracts. Please note that your notarized documents to be used outside of Canada may be required to be authenticated and an Apostille obtained from your provincial legal authority. 

4. How Lilian Cazacu Notary Public  can simplify  the Notarization Process

We pride ourselves on providing accessible and expert notary services. We simplify the notarization process by offering the following services:

a) Convenient Appointments: With two office locations in Langley and Aldergrove, we make scheduling an appointment simple and convenient to fit your needs.

b) Identity Verification: We meticulously verify the identities of all parties involved in the document signing process to ensure the validity of the documents and avoiding any fraudulent transactions

c) Professional Documentation: Our team adheres to strict professional standards when executing, sealing, and stamping documents, following all legal requirements and ensuring their credibility.

d) Clear Communication: We explain the notarization process in simple terms and are available to answer any questions or concerns you may have, so you can make informed decisions while signing those documents.

e) Taking the Time & Going the Extra Mile: While some documents are straight-forward and require a quick notarization, other documents require extra time and additional inquiries to make sure that the person understands and acknowledges its implications. By “going the extra-mile” and taking the time to explain those documents so the person understands them fully, it helps them gain peace of mind and trust us with any other further transactions that they may have. 

5. Requirements for Notarizing a Document

When having a document notarized, it is crucial to prepare accordingly and meet the necessary requirements:

a) Documentation: Bring the original document that requires notarization, along with any required copies.

b) Identification: At least one proper government-issued identification with a photograph is necessary for all parties involved in the signing process, while the second piece of identification does not have to have a photograph. 

c) Presence of Signatories: All parties must be physically present during the notarization process unless specific exceptions apply, such as in the case of remote notarization, which may be allowed from time to time, as in the case of COVID-19. Please note that if you need to sign on a corporate document, you must provide a document that confirms that you are one of the approved signatories for this corporation.

d) Foreign Language Documents: While our notary understands and reads multiple languages,  if a document is in a language other than English, it is best to consult with the Consulate from your country of destination  about any additional requirements, such as a translation from a certified translator and/or any additional authentication requirements.

6. Remote Notarization

Remote notarization allows notaries to notarize documents using video conferencing technology. While the process varies by jurisdiction and only for exceptional situations (such as COVID-19), it provides an alternative for those unable to meet in person due to various reasons such as health concerns, long-distance, or mobility issues. It is essential to consult with your notary concerning the specifics of remote notarization in your location, especially that currently in British Columbia, all the notarizations must be done in person!

If you want to know more about this topic or the author, please visit our website at www.lcnotary.ca or contact us at (604) 427-4279.

Safeguard Your Documents with Expert Notarization by Lilian Cazacu Notary Public

Notarizing your documents is an essential step in safeguarding their authenticity, accuracy, and legal efficacy. With us, you can be assured of a streamlined, accurate, and efficient notarization process. Our commitment to making law simple, combined with our two convenient office locations in Langley and Aldergrove, ensures that we are the go-to resource for all your notarization needs.

Don't leave the validity of your important documents to chance – rely on the trusted notary services of Lilian Cazacu Notary Corporation to ensure the highest level of professionalism and legal expertise. To learn more about notarizing documents or to book an appointment, visit www.lcnotary.ca or cal (604) 427-4279l. Protect your legal rights and obligations by choosing us to meet all your notarization requirements.

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