square gray

Notary Services

Helping to authenticate and certify documents and signatures for use abroad.

What is a Notary Public

A Notary Public is a member of the oldest branch of the legal profession in England and Wales. Notaries are often qualified solicitors who have taken further examinations and have been appointed to the Court of Faculties of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

At B P Collins our Notary Public is Dominic Ibbs, who is also a solicitor and senior associate within our wills, trusts, and probate team. Read more about Dominic.

What does a Notary Public do?

A Notary Public’s role is to primarily deal with the authentication and certification of documents and signatures for use in foreign countries.

The Notary identifies the parties to a document, seeks to determine their capacity to execute it and ensures that the document is properly executed according to English law and that so far as possible, the foreign jurisdiction’s requirements are met.  A record of the document is then retained by the Notary.   A Notary does not advise on international law and will not be able to advise you regarding the contents of any document you present to them.

You may be required to provide evidence of the source of funds if the transaction involves a transfer of money. They may also enquire as to the nature of the transaction as they are duty-bound to ensure that there is no fraud involved in the transaction. If you are unwilling to disclose this information the Notary will be unable to assist you.

Any documents that are in a language other than English must have an English version prepared by a qualified translator or by a lawyer in the foreign jurisdiction, who is prepared to take responsibility for the contents of the English translation.

When do you need a Notary?

Almost anyone may need the services of a Notary when they are involved in business abroad, or in a personal matter with an overseas connection.

Businesses often require a Notary when setting up a company overseas, proving the status and powers of a company’s officers, or submitting tenders in other countries.

As an individual, you may need help from a Notary in numerous situations, from foreign property transactions and overseas pension claims to proving your identity to foreign public and legal authorities.


For most matters, the Notary should be able to tell you about your fee in advance. For more complex matters, including the use of special skills or speed of execution, the Notary will tell you how your fee will be calculated– usually based on how long they will have to work on your matter.

There may be additional fees to pay to third parties, such as the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (‘FCDO’) or an Embassy.

Notary Data Protection Notice

Notary Regulation and Complaints

Notary Terms of Business

Notary Data Protection Policy

How long will it take?

If the document is straightforward, already prepared and in the correct form, the appointment is likely to take approximately 30 minutes. If the document or documents are complex, or preparatory work or additional drafting by the notary is required, the appointment will take longer.

If the documents need to be legalised by the relevant embassy or have an apostille attached by the FCDO, this will take additional time.

What you need to know when seeing a Notary

  • Notarial work at B P Collins is strictly by appointment only.
  • The Notary will need you to bring photographic identification along with your proof of address. Usually, this will have to be a driving licence or a current valid passport as well as a utility or council tax bill or bank statement to confirm your address. Your proof of address must be less than three months old.
  • A Notary needs to be assured that you understand any document, especially a document which is not in English. If you do not understand the document, the Notary will not be able to assist.
  • Any relevant papers or documents that relate to the matter will need to be seen.
  • To speed up the service we offer, we would encourage you to email or send a copy of your document to the Notary before your appointment.


We understand that business-critical documents and transactions may need authenticating within tight deadlines.

Notarial services at B P Collins are available during normal office hours of 9.00am to 5.30pm at our Gerrards Cross office. Subject to availability, they may, make arrangements to see you out of hours or out of the office if it is necessary. This may increase the cost of the matter and take longer.

For further information or advice please call 01753 889995 or email enquiries@bpcollins.co.uk.

Notary Services

“Dominic has an excellent manner with clients and good technical knowledge”

Dominic Ibbs – Principal Lawyer

Dominic is modest and genuine in his approach

Dominic Ibbs – Principal Lawyer