What is a Certified True Copy and can it be Authenticated and Legalized or Apostilled?

Published on Monday, June 25, 2012

The authentication and legalization process involves sending valuable documents to third parties. Inevitably they will be marked, stamped, bound, or embossed. In many circumstances they will not be returned to you. The alternative to submitting an original document is to use a Certified True Copy.

A Certified True Copy is a copy (usually a photocopy) of the original that has been signed and sealed by a Canadian notary or commissioner of oaths. Generally this requires submitting both the original and the copy to the notary or commissioner. He or she will examine the original and the copy, and then put their seal and signature on the copy, certifying that it is an Original True Copy.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) in Ottawa will authenticate certified true copies as long as they meet these requirements.

Before you proceed with using a Certified True Copy check with the embassy/consulate to ensure that it meets their document legalization requirements.

Lastly, even though DFAIT will authenticate your copy and the embassy will legalize it, you must also be sure that it will be accepted for its final intended purpose.

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