There are many reasons why you may need to use Canadian documents internationally. Maybe you are applying for work overseas, getting married, or registering a birth in another country. You may need to submit documents such as a Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Certificate of Divorce, police check, or your degree from a Canadian university.
The problem is that documents and certificates issued in Canada will only be recognized by foreign authorities if their authenticity is first confirmed by a special process. If you live in Vancouver and need documents validated for international use for either personal or business reasons, here’s what you should know.
What exactly is document validation?
You may need to have a Canadian document recognized in a foreign country for personal reasons, for immigration purposes, or when doing business abroad. Regardless of the reason, you may be told you need to have the document “authenticated and legalized”, or that “attestation” or an “Apostille Certificate” is required. The different terms can create a lot of confusion about what exactly you must do to get your document ready for international use. In Canada, all of these terms refer to validation. Document validation means that the authenticity of the document has been officially confirmed.
What is the document validation process?
The process to obtain official certification that your Canadian document is valid for international use involves three main steps:
- STEP #1: Prepare your document package. It may be necessary for you to have your document notarized. You may also need certified true copies or to obtain a certified translation of the document. Additional supporting documents may be required, depending on the country you wish to use the document and the type of document or certificate being attested. To ensure that you have everything in order, your best bet is to get advice from a professional with attestation certificate experience.
- STEP #2: Once your documents are prepared, send them out for authentication by the proper Canadian authority. The competent authority will either be the province where the document was issued or Global Affairs Canada.
- STEP #3: Send your authenticated document to be legalized. Your document must go to the local consulate or embassy for legalization by an official of the country in which the document will be used. For example, if you need to rely on a BC Birth Certificate in India, the authenticated birth certificate must be sent to the Consulate General of India in Vancouver. The consulate official will legalize the document by attesting to the seal and signature on the Canadian document.
After the attestation process is complete, your Canadian document is validated as genuine and will be recognized outside of Canada.
Who can help you validate documents in Vancouver?
Invicta Law Corporation offers streamlined document validation services in Vancouver. Maria Campos LL.M. has assisted clients with attestation of public and private documents for use in many foreign countries. We can guide you through the process to get your documents ready for international use, saving you time and money.