Notary publics hold an important role in society. Among other things, they serve as official witnesses to the execution and signing of contracts, agreements and numerous other legal documents. Notaries also certify documents as true copies of originals. The word “notarization” is used to describe the service a public notary provides.In addition to those described above, these services also include the authority to administer oaths, solemn declarations and affirmations that are used for affidavits and statutory declarations.The notary will not necessarily review the substance of the document, but it is important to remember that you must sign the document in their presence. When a document is notarized it provides an assurance that it was signed by the appropriate person. This is important to individuals when entering into contracts with one another. It reduces the risk of someone arguing that they did not sign the agreement. Notarizing an original document, such as an IDor certificate,assures the recipient of the notarized copy that the notary actually saw the original document.

In the Province of Ontario, notaries are authorized under the Ontario Notaries Act which states that: “…a notary public has and may use and exercise the power of drawing, passing, keeping and issuing all deeds and contracts, charter-parties and other mercantile transactions in Ontario, and also of attesting all commercial instruments that may be brought before him or her for public protestation, and otherwise of acting as is usual in the office of notary public, and may demand, receive and have all the rights, profits and emoluments rightfully appertaining and belonging to the calling of notary public.”