In New Zealand, a Notary Public is granted the title by the Archbishop of Canterbury in England under faculties issued by the Court of Faculties. A Notary Public is an officer duly appointed to:
- Draw, attest or certify under official seal deeds and other documents.
- Note or certify transactions relating to overseas documents.
In practice, this means verifying the identity of signatories and ensuring that they properly understand the transaction they are participating in. In the New Zealand legal environment a Notary is often involved in taking affidavits and declarations for overseas jurisdictions. They can also be called upon to certify, authenticate and witness documents such as passports and academic qualifications, prepare notarial certificates and liase with the Department of Internal Affairs Authentication Unit.
When visiting a notary public it is important to have formal identification with you ideally your passport or photo drivers licence. If the document being notarised refers to a specific identity document the notary will need to sight that document as well. In some cases documents once signed by the notary will need to be sent to the Department of Internal Affairs in Wellington for authentication.
Charges for Notarial services will depend on the number of documents, their complexity and the time required to process them.