Degree Certificates

To certify the genuineness of a degree certificate a Notary will usually need to check with the relevant University records office. The process of checking may take up to two days.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has recently stipulated that they will not legalise copy degree certificates by apostille for foreign academic institutions unless the notary certifies the accreditation of the foreign institution and the authenticity of the original degree certificate.

Marty Burn Notary Public Oxford

Notary Work

Marty Burn, Notary Public Oxford will be out of the office between Tuesday 10th April 2012 and Thursday 12th April 2012. If Notary services are required urgently during this period please send an e-mail to Marty Burn on and he will be able to recommend an alternative notary to carry out the work.

The role of the Notary Public in International Adoption

Once a local authority or adoption agency had issued its Certificate of Eligibility to Adopt all the relevant papers are submitted to the International Adoption Department in Darlington, which then puts together a bundle of papers for onward transmission to the country of origin. This bundle includes documents which are prescribed by the Department and incudes the Certificate of Eligibility, medical reports, police CRB checks, Home Study Report and the Local Authority’s Decision Maker’s letter.

However before the bundle can be submitted the whole bundle has to be notarised and thereafter legalised by apostille at the Legalisation Section at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and, depending on the country of origin, further legalisation at the relevant embassy.

Marty Burn, Notary Public Oxford

Can a Notary Public Certify an unattested signature?

It is permissible for a notary public to certify the fact that the signature on a document is that of the signatory known to him provided that the notary follows the procedure below:-
A notary may properly witness the signature only if it is signed in his presence. Similarly he may authenticate the due execution of a document only if it is executed in his physical presence. Occasionally, however, a notary may be asked to verify that the signature is genuine, even though he was not present when the signing took place.
If he accepts such instructions then he must adhere to the following minimum standards:-
1. On a prior occasion the Notary must have first seen the signatory affix his signature to a form which is retained in the protocol file of the Notary;
2. The Notary should check the continued existence of the signatory regularly;
3. If the signatory is a representative of an organisation or company his continued authority should be checked regularly;
4. The Notary should at the time of verifying the signature take such steps as are reasonable to ensure that the signatory has in fact signed the particular document;
5. The certificate must be unequivocal and must not state or imply that the signature has been fixed in the presence of the Notary or that the document has been properly executed;
6. The Notary must refuse to certify the unattested signature if sole attestation by a notary is required to complete the formal requirements for the proper execution of the document.

Marty Burn, Notary Public Oxford

Going to work as a doctor or nurse in Australia – Notary requirements

Notaries frequently assists doctors, nurses and general medical staff with the forms required by the Australian medical authorities.

Documents to be notarised include: –


•Passport photos

•Birth certificate

•Statutory declaration

•Nursing licence

•AMC form

•GMC certificate

•Medical degree certificates

The Notary will need to see all the original documents and photocopies of each. It is generally recommended that 3 copies of each document are required (1 each for AMC, AHPRA and the applicant’s hospital).

The notary public will usually require proof from a university that degree certificates were genuinely awarded, likewise with your FY1/FY2 certificates. They are able to phone up the GMC and get instant confirmation of registration.

A document to be certified for use in Australia usually requires the Notary Public to confirm that the document is certified as a true copy of the original as seen/sighted by the Notary.

Other documents may require a statement by the Notary Public that the applicant  has appeared before the Notary, has been identified by the Notary, and has signed the document in the presence of the Notary.