Apostille (Authentication & Legalization)

Authentication and Legalization of Documents in North York, Toronto, Canada

Documents which are notarized in Canada for abroad usage must pass through the procedure of “authentication” and “legalization” so as to confirm their validation in a foreign jurisdiction. This procedure is similar to “apostille certificates” released by participant countries in the The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (1961).

However, Canada did not take part in this convention. Hence, notaries in Canada do not provide “apostille certificates”. Nevertheless, depending on the country and the document in question, Notarizers is able to provide you with authentication and legalization services. Our lawyers will authenticate and/or legalize your notarized documents for an extra fee.

“Authentication” eliminates the burden placed on foreign courts and authorities, by proving valid documents originating outside their countries. Authentication is carried out by the DFAIT (Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade) and provincial authentication authorities like the Government of Ontario’s Management Board Secretariat (Official Documents) or the Official Documents and Appointments branch of Alberta’s Department of Justice. To authenticate a document in accordance with the foreign country’s recipient rules, it is advised to first consult with the embassy or consulate of that particular country (i.e. the country where you plan to wed).

Authentication confirms the registration of a notary public, notary’s seal and signature. At the time of the request, DFAIT and/or the provincial authentication authority verifies its records as to confirm the notary’s registration. It also compares the notary seal and the signature on the document being submitted to existing records.

Once the notary’s authority, signature and seal are confirmed, the document will receive a stamp (DFAIT) and/or an additional seal along with a statement from the provincial authentication authority to the effect that the notary is “known to be in good standing”. Henceforth, nothing may be added to or removed from the document.

When the authentication process has been completed, “legalization” starts. As the document is handed over to the consulate of the relevant foreign country for certification, the document then acquires legal authority in that country.
List of Consulates
List of Embassy