Notarising Documents during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Like many other businesses, our notary public services have also been affected by the global outbreak of COVID-19 (the coronavirus pandemic). For a time, we continued to provide notary public services and introduced precautions like wearing face masks, as well as wiping down meeting tables, pens, and other hard surfaces after every meeting.
Unfortunately, due to increased restrictions on movement and the existing public health order supporting social distancing, we’ve made the decision to temporarily close our office until further notice.
Our team will continue to work from other locations. We’ll still be providing legal services and notary public services where possible by telephone, instant messaging, email, and video conference. However, due to the limitations on face-to-face contact, it means that we won’t be able to witness any documents or verify any identification.
Some of the notary public services that we can still provide include:
- Certifying copies of original Australian government documents such as birth certificates, change of name certificates, marriage certificates, divorce certificates and death certificates.
- Certifying copies of original photograph identification documents accepted in Australia, such as drivers licences issued from any Australian state or territory, Australian passports, and foreign passports (although please be aware that some foreign offices will reject copies of their own passports being certified by an Australian notary public).
- Certifying copies of original non-photographic identification documents accepted in Australia, such as Medicare card, bank cards and credit cards, statements or correspondence from banks or utility providers (provided they have also been stamped by the organisation that issued the document).
- Certifying and verifying copies of education documents (ie, testamurs, transcripts, letters of completion or enrolments etc) issued from Australian educational institutions, subject to verification from those institutions – which could also be limited at this time.
- Certifying and verifying Australian company documents issued by ASIC.
- Certifying Australian Federal Police and state police certificates of National Police Check.
- Certifying and verifying medical records, prescriptions and medical certificates, subject to verification by the relevant doctor or medical centre.
Some of the work will be subject to longer processing times either because of the verification process or because of requirement to send and receive original documentation as well as the return of all documentation to you.
We can also still provide assistance with obtaining an apostille or authentication through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, however, you must allow for even more turnaround time for processing as these have also been affected by restrictions brought about by COVID-19.
Do you have any questions regarding this article?
Whether you're notarising a document for the first time or the hundreth time, the requirements, processes, and terms can be confusing and daunting - or just a pain and a hassle (especially if you need an apostille, or to authenticate or legalise as well). Don't worry! We're here to simplify it, explain it, and help you with what you need to achieve it.
Contact us or visit our Frequently Asked Questions for more information about our notary public services. We've also created a flowchart to help explain notarisation, apostille, authentication and legalisation.
So, what's next?
Why choose Phang Legal for your notary public services?
We're a leading provider of notary public services in Sydney known for our experience and expertise in notarising documents for other countries, our low-cost fixed fees and service offering, and our availability to help on short notice. With our offices conveniently located in Parramatta, the geographic centre of the Sydney metropolitan area, we help clients from across Sydney and beyond with personal, professional and timely notary public services.
This website is maintained by Phang Legal, a boutique law firm in Parramatta and a leading provider of quality notary public services to satisfied clients across Sydney.
Ern Phang is a director of Phang Legal and a notary public (since 2005). Ern regularly writes about his experiences as a notary public and the issues faced by his clients in sending documents to other countries.