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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Red Seal Notary is Canada's National Notary Public Company

Most Popular Questions

What is a Notary?

A notary public is a person who can serve as an official witness to the execution (signing) of contracts, agreements, and an almost limitless array of legal documents.

A Notary also has the authority to administer oaths, solemn affirmations, and declarations that are used for affidavits and statutory declarations.  A notary public may also certify documents to be true copies of the original.

In some jurisdictions, a notary public can also draft contracts, promissory notes, wills, mortgages and other legal documents.  Almost always, the powers of a notary public in each province or state are derived from provincial or state legislation.

What is the difference between a Notary Public and a Commissioner of Oaths?

One of the main differences between a notary public and a commissioner of oaths is that although both are authorized by the government, the notary public is authorized to certify copies and verify the execution of almost any agreement or legal document in addition to having all the capabilities of a Commissioner of Oaths.

A commissioner of oaths is authorized to administer an oath or declaration made in affidavits and other sworn documents.

Generally speaking, documents traveling across jurisdictions, especially internationally, require a notary public.

Does Red Seal Notary provide general legal advice or advice regarding drafting documents?

Red Seal Notary does not provide general legal advice or advice pertaining to drafting legal documents.

However, Red Seal Notary drafts simple Affidavits such as Statutory Declaration of Single Status or Common Law Status, Consent to Travel letters & Letters of Invitation if required by the client.

Is the notary able to explain my document to me or tell me if it is correct before I sign and notarize?

The notary will verify the identity of the person signing the document and witnesses the signature.  The notary does not explain the content of the document nor does it review the document for accuracy.

How do I book an appointment?

To book an appointment, you can:

Call Us Toll Free: 1-888-922-7325
Email Us: info@redsealnotary.com OR

Complete an online appointment request: http://www.RedSealNotary.com/appointment.html

How long does it take to notarize the document?

Red Seal provides fast and convenient service.  The time required to notarize depends on the number of documents, number of signatures and notarization seals required.

What do I bring to an appointment?

One piece of valid government issued photo ID and the original document is required.  The person signing the document must appear before the notary.  Please do not sign the document until you are in front of the Notary.

What is the fee for notarizations?

Click here for list of fees and if you require further information please call us at 1-888-922-7325.

Why do certain locations only include the major intersection?

Red Seal Notary provides service across Canada.  Certain locations are walk-in while others are by appointment only.  For by appointment locations, the major intersection is provided for clients to identify the location that is most convenient.  To ensure the notary is in the office and available to assist the client, appointments are scheduled prior to providing the exact address. Click here for a list of our locations.

To book an appointment, please call us at 1-888-922-7325, or click here for an online request.

Is there a line up at your walk-in locations and how long is the wait time to be served?

There is generally no long line up and in most cases you are served immediately.  In situations where there is a wait time, the waiting period would be less than 10-15 minutes.

I require a notarization and have lost all of my identification cards? Can I still get my documents notarized?

Unfortunately Red Seal Notary is unable to assist clients without a valid government issued photo Identification unless the service requested is for certified true copies of original documents.

Are you able to make a notarized or certified true copy of a photo copy?

The notary must be presented with the original document in order to make a copy and notarize the copy in order to certify that the copy made is true to the original.

Are you able to witness my signature on a document that is in a language other than English or French?

The notary does not verify the content of the document but rather your signature.   Therefore regardless of the language the document is in, the notary is able to witness your signature provided you are able to attest to the contents of the document.

Authentication & Legalization

When documents are notarized in Canada for use abroad, such documents must go through a process of “authentication” and “legalization” in order to be valid in the foreign jurisdiction. The combined process of “authentication” and “legalization” is the Canadian equivalent of “apostille certificates” issued in other countries that are signatories to The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (1961). As Canada did not sign this convention, notaries in Canada do not provide “apostille certificate

I have sent documents overseas and they have been returned to me as they were not apostilled. What does this mean?

Documents of Canadian origin that are being used abroad need to be Authenticated and Legalized (Apostilled).  Red Seal’s team of staff can take this task out of your hands as we work closely with Authentication Departments, Consulate and Embassies.

Click here for additional information regarding our Authentication & Legalization services.  

How long does the process take?

In most cases, the process takes about ten business days depending on the complexity of the file and the turnaround time of the embassy or the consulate.  However, Red Seal Notary also provides rush service for an additional fee if available which may reduce the turnaround time.

Do you provide translation?

Red Seal works closely with a translation company that specializes in all languages. We are able to have your document translated in whichever language requested.

Are your notaries registered?

Red Seal Notary’s team of notaries are registered with Official Document Services and Global affairs Canada’s Authentication Department.

Do you have a rush service?

Rush service is available if requested as long as the Embassy or Consulate has a rush service option which is very common.

What if I have to leave the country before my documents are ready?

Provided you notify us of such in advance and leave us with your international address, we will ship your documents to you via courier.

Consent to Travel

Due to increasing concern for the safety of children, many governments including that of Canada have initiated special requirements when children under 18 years of age are travelling without both parents.

Specifically, many countries now require that documentary evidence in the form of a notarized consent to travel letter be presented to establish the permission of the parent(s) / legal guardian(s) for a minor to cross international borders with an accompanying adult. This requirement is in addition to other legal requirements as specified by airlines and official authorities.

My Children are traveling without me what do they need?
  • If a minor is travelling with only one parent, the absent parent is expected to provide notarized consent.

 

  • If a minor is traveling alone or is accompanied by an adult other than a parent, both parents are required to give consent or the sole documented custodial parent must provide notarized consent.

 

  • If a minor has only one parent as evidenced by the child’s birth certificate, a notarized copy of a birth certificate or the original will be sufficient proof allowing for travel.
My spouse is out of the country and I have to travel with our child. Can the consent be given through email and Red Seal to notarize my spouse’s signature by verifying the ID I have?

The parent giving consent to the parent who is travelling with the child/children or the parents giving consent to person travelling with the child/children have to be physically present in front of the notary to sign the letter and the signature to be verified.

When do I need a consent to travel letter?

A consent to travel letter is not a legal requirement in Canada, but it can simplify travel for Canadian children, as it may be requested by immigration authorities when entering or leaving a foreign country or by Canadian officials when re-entering Canada. The letter demonstrates that Canadian children have permission from parent(s) or guardian(s) who are not accompanying them to travel abroad.

My spouse and I are divorced and we have joint custody. Can I travel with our child and do I need to get my spouse’s consent?

You would be able to travel with your child/children as long as the other parent can provide you with a consent to travel letter granting permission.

Fingerprinting

Red Seal Notary offers two types of fingerprinting services through Safran Morpho Global ID Services, an RCMP accredited organization.  Red Seal Notary offers both Electronic and Ink & Roll Fingerprinting.  Our professionally trained personnel can assist individuals who require fingerprints for:

  • Citizenship
  • Immigration
  • Employment
  • Professional Licensing Applications
  • Visas/Waivers for Foreign Work or Travel
  • Pardon Applications (Record Suspension)
  • Adoption
  • Name Change Applications
  • Volunteer Employment
  • Privacy Act Requests
  • Other Civil (Non-Criminal) Purposes
How long does it take to take the fingerprints?

Each session takes approximately 10-30 minutes.

How long will it take for my digital fingerprints to be processed by the RCMP?

If there is no criminal record and you have never been fingerprinted for a criminal offence in Canada, the RCMP will make every effort possible to process the request within 72 hours of receiving the electronic submission. This means that the RCMP will put the results in the mail for mailing back to the applicant or third party within 72 hours. In view of this, please ensure sufficient time is allowed for receipt of the results in the mail before commencing inquiries about the status of fingerprint records.

If a criminal record is encountered during the verification process, processing time will be increased to 120 days.

What type of identification do I need to bring with me?

You must provide two pieces of valid government issued identification, at least one of which must include a photo.

The following types of identification are acceptable:

  • Passport
  • Citizenship Card or Document
  • Immigration Document (Student Visa, Work Visa, Landing Papers)
  • Birth Certificate
  • Driver’s License
  • Permanent Resident Card or Record of Landing for Citizenship applicants
  • Government ID (if you are employed by a federal or Provincial branch of the Government)
  • Health card with photo
What else do I need to bring with me in addition to my identification cards?
  • If the requesting party has provided you with a letter requesting fingerprints and/or a file number or numbers;
  • If a specific fingerprint card must be used, other than an RCMP or FBI card, please bring it (them) with you;
  • If the results are to be submitted to a third party, please have all necessary contact information;
  • If the requesting party has specific or unusual requirements, such as the fingerprint card must be notarized, please bring the instructions and notify our staff member in advance.
Do I need to book an appointment for fingerprinting service?

No appointment is necessary for the fingerprinting service.  However, it is important to make sure the location you are visiting offers this service.

Letters of Invitation

Depending on the country of origin, some foreign nationals wishing to visit Canada must apply for a Temporary Resident Visa.  In order to do so, a letter of invitation is often required.  This letter is written on behalf of the Canadian resident who wishes to invite the person to apply for a visitor visa.

Once the Letter is prepared and notarized, the person visiting Canada must present the original letter along with their application and other required documents to the Canadian consulate or embassy in their country.

Does Red Seal Notary prepare Letters of Invitation?

Red Seal Notary offers drafting services as well as notarization of letters of invitation.  To expedite the process, it is recommended for the client to complete the online form in order to submit the required information beforehand so that the document is drafted and ready to be reviewed and signed upon arrival. [LINK]

Does an Invitation Letter drafted and or notarized by Red Seal Notary guarantee issuance of Visitor’s Visa?

A letter of invitation does not guarantee issuance of the visitor’s visa.  Visa officers will assess applications in order to determine the eligibility for granting a visitor’s visa to Canada.

Can more than one person sign the Letter of Invitation and who should appear in front of the notary to notarize the letter?

More than one person can invite and sign the invitation letter.  All parties signing the document must appear in front of the notary in order to sign the letter.

Affidavits & Statutory Declarations

An Affidavit is a written statement confirmed by oath or affirmation, for use as evidence in court.

A statutory Declaration is a written statement of facts which the declarant solemnly states to be true before signing the document.

Most Statutory Declarations appear in standard forms, especially Government forms. However there are some occasions when you need to come up with the Declaration yourself. You may on such occasions be able to choose either an affidavit or a statutory declaration, in which case you can choose whichever wording you prefer.

Red Seal Notary provides Statutory Declarations such as Common Law Union Declaration, Marital Status Declaration, Proof of Relationship Declarations and Name Discrepancy Declarations [LINK]

What is a commissioner for taking affidavits?

A commissioner for taking affidavits is a person who can legally administer an oath, affirmation or declaration, for example, to a person making an affidavit.

Does Red Seal Notary prepare Affidavits and Statutory Declarations?

Red Seal Notary prepares common affidavits and statutory declarations.  To expedite the process, it is recommended for the client to complete the online form in order to submitted the required information beforehand so that the document is drafted and ready to be reviewed and signed upon arrival [LINK]

What type of common Affidavits and Statutory Declarations does Red Seal Notary Draft?

Red Seal Notary prepares Identity Verification, OSAP affidavits and can customize an affidavit specific to a client’s request.

We also draft Proof of Relationship Declarations, Name Discrepancy Declarations as well as Common Law Union Declaration and Marital Status Declaration [LINK]

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