E-notary and e-apostille services offer an efficient, ‘fast-tracked’ alternative to traditional notary and apostille services. Online notary services allow you to legalise your documents remotely. This eliminates the time and costs associated with sending documents physically to your local notary office, the processing of these once they arrive, and the subsequent submission of these to the recipient.
MSC Notaries is one of London’s leading online notary public with decades of experience in providing notary and apostille services in the UK and internationally. We offer a range of online notary services to allow you to legalise your documents digitally with a member of our team, from anywhere in the world, quickly and effectively.
Our online notary services
Electronic notarisation, otherwise known as digital notarisation, online notarisation, or e-notary, refers to the process of notarising documents entirely online and remotely using electronic signatures.
If your documents are required for use internationally, e-notarisation must then be followed by an e-apostille process. This provides document holders with a digital apostille certificate, or digital apostille stamp, which confirms the electronic signature of your online notary public and legalises it for use abroad.
Generally, our fee to authenticate and notarise a document online starts from £80+ VAT. In addition, some institutions (particularly universities) charge a verification fee.
Where you have multiple documents that require authenticating and notarising, we can offer a bulk discount. Please contact us for a comprehensive and competitive quote.
How does electronic notarisation work?
Electronic notarisation means a notary public can notarise a document entirely online to confirm that it is authentic. To do so, our online notary public creates an electronic digital encrypted version of your paper document(s), which has a unique electronic signature associated with it that is completely unique to the notary authenticating your document. Once an e-notarised or e-apostilled document has been created, this can be emailed to you wherever you are.
You will generally need to email us a scanned image of the paper copy of the document(s) and photographic ID, or you may need to video or voice call our office. However, the specific process of e-notarisation will depend on the document(s) you require this for. To hear more about what is required, it is best to get in touch with our team, who will explain everything involved and provide you with an accurate quote.
If you don’t have internet access or equipment to send us an image of your document, we also offer mobile notary services.
Types of electronic signatures we use
Electronic signatures are a key component of online notarisation. The electronic signatures we use as part of our online notary services abide by industry standard requirements (Regulation (EU) 910/2014 (eIDAS)) as incorporated into UK law, including any amendment or re-enactment.
The MSC Notaries team use Qualified Electronic Signature (QES) in the e-notarisation process and this is one of the forms accepted by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO). QES is an advanced type of electronic signature and the most secure type that can be used, as it includes all the same security measures as AES with added means of identification and verification. These types of signatures can only be created by a qualified signature creation device (QSCD) and are the equivalent of a handwritten signature.
Benefits of e-notarisation
There are a range of key advantages for individuals or businesses to use e-notary and e-apostille services:
When are online notary services not possible?
For many documents that require a signature on the document to be notarised, online notarisation is often possible. This includes powers of attorney and declarations/ affidavits. These documents require the person signing to appear before the notary public with a photographic ID, and to sign the document in front of the notary.
Other examples of documents that are not suitable for e-notary or e-apostille services include:
- General Register Office (GRO) documents including birth, death, marriage or civil partnership, and adoption certificates.
- Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) certificates for England and Wales, or Disclosure certificates for Scotland or Northern Ireland.
- ACRO Police certificates.
- Fingerprint certificates.
- Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) certificates.
- Any documents required to be legalised by Consulates or High Commissions.
We are often asked if we can identify the person and witness them sign via video call. The guidelines published by our regulator state that this should not be done in most cases, as there are certain checks that have to be made which can only be done in person.
Are e-notary and e-apostilles accepted internationally?
International agreements state that countries that are part of the Hague Convention should accept e-notary and e-apostille certificates. However, unfortunately, they are not accepted in all cases, so it’s important to check regulations with the recipient of your documents thoroughly beforehand before going ahead with online notary services. If you fail to check properly, you can end up spending time and money on online notary services if your documents and certificates are not accepted.
Before you work with an online notary public, you should confirm if the recipient of your document(s) will accept e-notary and/or e-apostille certificates, and in instances where you are submitting multiple documents, whether multiple certificates are required per document.
You should make it clear to whoever has requested your documents that e-notary and e-apostille certificates are entirely digital, so there will be no physical copies for them to review.
Despite e-notary and e-apostille certificates not being accepted in all countries at the moment, this is likely to change as an increasing number of countries adapt to this new, modern and economical way to authenticate and legalise documents.
What our clients say
A truly amazing service! From my first email asking for initial information on their services to the final email from them confirming everything was done - it was all perfect. They were so helpful and the actual service itself was so quick for such a reasonable price - I honestly couldn't have wished for a better experience. Thank you to everyone involved, you made such a stressful time so much easier to manage.
— Emmie H
Why choose MSC Notaries for online notary services?
Can a notary public notarise a document online?
If we are required to notarise documents to confirm they are authentic, remote or online notarisation is possible. Examples of documents you may want a notary public to authenticate include:
- Degree certificates
- Police certificates
- TEFL certificates
- Employment letters
- School letters
- A-Level/ GCSE certificates
- GP reports
There are still some documents you must email us scans of. For example, a photographic ID and a signed letter authorising the document issuer to verify it to us. However, we can advise on what is required for online notary services to be feasible for you.
Can a notary public notarise from another country?
Yes, MSC Notaries are based in London, but we offer a truly international online notary service. Some of our clients are based in other countries, and never need to step into our office.
If you’re based abroad and want to authenticate a document or certificate, we can do this remotely without a face-to-face appointment in London. We can also offer in-house professional document translation services in a range of languages.
Whether you’re an individual living overseas, or setting up a business abroad, an online notary could help save you time and money.
Can apostille or consular legalisation also be done online or remotely?
Once your document has been notarised online or remotely, we can also arrange for it to be apostilled and/or legalised remotely, whether you are based abroad or aren’t able to visit our office.
There may be additional documents that you will need to send us – this depends on the requirements of the consulate, but usually, these can be scanned and emailed, or posted to us.
Please contact us for precise costs, timescales and additional requirements associated with e-apostille and/or online consular legalisation.
What are the identification requirements for online notary services?
Identification requirements and documentation are the same as for traditional notarisation requirements, and we comply with the same legislation. If you are unable to provide the required identification documentation for us to identify you and comply with legal requirements, we won’t be able to carry out the e-notary or e-apostille process.