Now that pandemic travel restrictions have eased, it is finally possible to go on that Caribbean cruise or romantic vacation to Paris that you have been dreaming of. But before booking your dream vacation, you may need to apply for a passport for the first time. In Canada, applying for your first passport (or renewing a passport that expired 15 years ago or more) will require the signature of a guarantor who knows you personally and can vouch for the information on your passport application. The guarantor must be someone who holds a Canadian passport and has known you personally for at least two years. If you cannot find a suitable guarantor, it is possible to provide a document called a “Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor” to the passport office instead.
A Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor is a form on which you explain to the passport office why you are unable to provide a guarantor, and on which you also need to list personal references that the passport office can call. You must then take this form, along with your passport photos and two valid pieces of government issued photo identification to be signed in front of a Notary Public or Commissioner of Oaths. You will be asked to declare that the information in your form is true, which is similar to taking an oath in court. The Notary Public or Commissioner of Oaths will also sign one of your passport photos and certify copies of your photo identification for you to provide to the passport officials.
This form is not available online. You need to either request it in person at a Passport Canada office or contact the Government of Canada Passport Program to have the form mailed to you. A link to the contact information is provided below.
We have helpful Notaries who can notarize a Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor for you. Our drop-in Adelaide location is located a short walk from the Toronto passport office on Victoria Street, with no appointment necessary. You can have the document notarized there quickly prior to submitting it to the passport office. We also have other convenient walk-in offices in Toronto, Ottawa, and Mississauga where you can have the document notarized. You can also contact our helpful call center to make appointments to notarize documents at locations across Canada.