I need to provide a copy of my qualification
- you will need to let me see the original of your qualification(s)
- you have to let me know why you need the certified copy of your qualification
- you will have to let me which country the certified copy of the qualification is going to
- if you receive instructions or requirements from the organisation or person asking for the copy of the qualifications you should let me see them. The instructions sometimes contain details on how copies need certification
- what type of certification you wish to receive (see here for further details)
Other essential things you need to know when you use a notary
In all the notarial work I do there I things I have to do including:
identifying you (Click here to find out more)
usually preparing a separate document (called a ‘notarial certificate’) which I attach to the document you sign, and then I bind that certificate to the power of attorney and add my signature and seal. (What does notarial certificate contain?);
recording the details of what I have done for you. (Why do I have do this and what does it involve?)
Things you should do or you should know before you come and see me
Here are fews things you should know or you should check:
How should the qualifications be certified?
You should check (or provide to me) the specific requirements you need to meet. These might include instructions on:
- whether I need to use specific wording as to certification;
- whether each qualification needs separate certification or whether your qualifications can be bundled together;
- whether you need to provide a transcript of your marks;
- whether the certified copies need legalisation.
Unless you have specific instructions on the above I will prepare one covering certificate (see above) for all the qualifications you need certifying.
What type of certification you require from me
Often organisations in other countries when requesting a certified copy of a qualification are operating on an assumption. The assumption is that a notary when certifying a copy of a qualification is also indicating you have received the qualification/degree to which your certificate relates. The only way I can do this is by contacting the college, university or exam board concerned.
That is I am not merely stating that the certified copy I produce is only a copy of the piece of paper (your qualification certificate) you provided. Unfortunately, there is a large problem with fake certificates being used. An internet search will indicates the extent and nature of the problem, such as here.
Given technological advances it is often not possible to tell a genuine certificate from a fake. Accordingly, I can either
- certify a copy of your qualification certificate after checking with the college/university/exam board who issued it, or
- merely state that I have copied the document you have provided to me (see Certifying a copy without confirmation below).
How I check whether you have received your qualification
If I check whether you have received your qualification I will normally contact:
- the college/university/school/exam board that issued it; or
- Higher Education Degree Datacheck; or
- for GCSE/A Level exam boards, the particular exam board which issued the GCSE/A Level certificate, such as Edxcel.
HEDD is slowly replacing colleges and universities as the contact point where to make a check. HEDD maintain a list of colleges/universities, which indicate whether the check needs making with HEDD or the college or university directly.
How long it take to obtain a response when making a check?
For most colleges/universities I normally receive a response with 3 to 4 working days. HEDD claim they will provide a response within 5 working days, but often their response is quicker: within 1 or 2 working days. For GCSE/A Level exam boards, the normal response time seems to be around 20 working days, and with an extra charge for a quicker response.
What happens if I do not make a check (or you do not want me to check)
If I do not make a check (or you do not want me to make a check) with the college/university/exam board that issued your qualification I will still certify a copy of the qualification. However, I will normally add a qualification to my certificate:
I have not verified that the [qualification] is genuine nor have I made any independent check as to its authenticity
How much does it cost to check with a college, university or exam board that it has awarded you your qualification?
Most colleges and universities do not charge when I check with them whether a client has been awarded a qualification. There are some exceptions (such as Bristol University).
Where it is necessary to use HEDD, there will be a charge. HEDD charge £12 for each qualification checked. For confirmation of results for GCSE/A Level exams, the costs are usually much higher, with, for example, Edxcel charges starting at £43 for an application.
Countries/organisations where I need not check
There are some countries or organisations where it is not required for the notary to make checks as to whether the qualification was issued to the client. For example, in Australia the organisations dealing with registration and recognition of doctors, nurses and so on make their own check.
Last updated: 19 April 2016.