Do you have a document that needs to be notarised? Our Auckland notary public, Chris Davis, answers some commonly asked questions below.

What is a notary public?

In New Zealand, a notary public is a lawyer authorised by the Archbishop of Canterbury to officially witness the signing of legal documents, certify copies of legal documents, collect sworn statements and administer oaths where those documents are to be used overseas.

Do I need to make an appointment for notary services?

Yes, I may be in a meeting or out of the office, so appointments are required for notary services. 

Appointments for notarisations are generally available between the hours of 10.30am and 12.30pm or 2.30pm and 4.00pm on all weekdays excluding Wednesday.

What should I bring to my appointment?

Witnessing signatures on documents

If you have a document which needs to be signed and witnessed in New Zealand for use overseas, you’ll need to bring the completed document, with all information filled out except for your signature. You must sign the document in my presence. I will then complete the witnessing of the document and attach my notarial certificate and seal.

I do not prepare these documents because it is not possible for me to know what the requirements of each country might be. Therefore, if you have any doubt as to whether the form or content of the document is correct you will need to verify that with the authorities in the relevant overseas country prior to your appointment.

You will also need to bring the original of some form of photographic identification, preferably your passport. In some instances, I will also require you to provide evidence of your residential address, usually provided by way of an original of a utility bill.

Certifying copies of documents

For this service, I need to sight the original document and verify the copy that I am certifying is a true and correct copy of the original. For that purpose, it is usually easier for me to make the copies myself, rather than have to compare copies that you have made, with the original.

In certain circumstances, I may need to be satisfied as to the validity of the original document. This may require me to make enquiries with the person or entity that has issued the original document.

How much will it cost to have my documents notarised?

We charge $80.00 for notarising the first document and $10.00 for each additional document or copy.

This may vary if there are a significant number of documents, or if the time required to complete the documents is unusually high (such as documents that have a large number of pages needing to be initialled, signed or copied). 

Payment may be made in cash or by credit card. We do not accept payment by EFTPOS.

Are you able to notarise documents in languages other than English?

Yes, if the document is written in another language then my notarial certificate will record that this is the case, and that I do not understand the language but that the signatory has confirmed to me that they understand what they are signing and do so willingly.

My notarial certificate will also record that I am a duly appointed notary in New Zealand and have verified the identity of the signatory.

Will an apostille certification or authentication be required?

This depends on the country in which the document is to be used.

The apostille/authentication process is completed by the Department of Internal Affairs in Wellington. When we complete the notarisation, we can advise you as to the process, the cost and provide you with the relevant form.

Where can I find out more?

For further information or to arrange an appointment, please contact reception on (09) 489 9102 or reception@armstrongmurray.co.nz.

More information is also available from the New Zealand Society of Notaries or the Citizens Advice Bureau.