WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT LEGALIZATION AND AUTHENTICATION OF DOCUMENTS in CANADA
By Gin Aguilar
If you are one of the people who always get confused as to what kind of documents must undergo consular notarization and authentication here in Canada so it may be used in the Philippines, worry not, because you are not alone. Everyday, we encounter clients that are clueless about what they need to do or where they need to go in order to get their documents properly authenticated and make sure it is legitimate. So for everyone’s peace of mind, here’s a detailed information and guide on how to authenticate your documents for legal use in the Philippines.
WHY DO I NEED TO AUTHENTICATE A DOCUMENT in CANADA?
An important thing to know is that neither Canada nor Philippines is a signatory to the Hague Apostille Convention**, and therefore does not issue apostilles. This means that in order for documents that were executed, signed or issued in Canada to take legal effect in the Philippines, these documents must undergo consular notarization (or authentication, as the case may be) at the Philippine Embassy, or one of its consulates, in Canada.
The most common examples of these documents are Special Powers of Attorney (SPAs), Affidavits, General Powers of Attorney, Certificates of Birth, Marriage or Death, Deeds, Contracts, Assignments, Letters of Patent, Articles of Incorporation, and official documents issued by authorities in Canada.
For the legalization of these documents, you need to go to the Philippine Embassy in Ottawa or to any of the Philippine consulates located in Toronto, Vancouver or Calgary with your documents already printed and/or filled out with the right information. Please note that the Embassy does not draft documents such as SPAs on behalf of the applicants.
WHAT REQUIREMENTS DO I NEED TO BRING to the PHILIPPINE EMBASSY or CONSULATE?
Make sure that you have the following requirements with you prior to going to the Philippine Embassy or Philippine Consulate:
- Document for notarization
- 2 government-issued IDs such as valid passport, driver’s license, Canadian citizenship card, permanent residence card, Ontario photo ID; make sure that you have a photocopy with you since it will be used as an attachment to the document for authentication
- Cash, bank draft or money order (Debit/credit cards or personal cheques are NOT accepted)
- “Personal appearance” of all signatories to the document
There is no need for an appointment for legalization of documents in the Philippine Embassy in Ottawa or in any of the Philippine Consulates in Canada. Processing is done on a first-come, first-served basis. As of June 15th 2019, the Philippine Embassy or any of the Philippine Consulates in Canada no longer affixes “red satin ribbons” on its authenticated/notarized documents, pursuant to instructions from the Department of Foreign Affairs.
It is very important to take note that the person/persons executing the legal document (SPA, Affidavit, General powers of attorney etc.) which is to be used in the Philippines must personally appear before a consular officer to acknowledge and sign the document. If for some reason, the said individual who executes the legal document is unable to personally appear, the following steps are needed to be done in order to have the document authenticated:
STEPS FOR AUTHENTICATION:
- Have your legal document notarized by a duly commissioned and authorized lawyer or notary public.
- Submit the notarized document to any of the following offices (depending on the province or territory in Canada where you are located) for certification of signature and authority of the lawyer or notary public:
UNDER THE CONSULAR JURISDICTION OF THE PHILIPPINE CONSULATE IN TORONTO:
Official Documents Services
Main Floor, 222 Jarvis St.
Toronto, ON M7A 0B6
Office of Consumer and Corporate Affairs
Commissioner for Oaths/Notary Public Office
Winnipeg, MB R3C 3L6
UNDER THE CONSULAR JURISDICTION OF THE PHILIPPINE EMBASSY IN OTTAWA:
Chambre des notaires du Québec (CNQ)
2045 Stanley Street, Suite 101
Montreal, QC H3A 2V4
Justice and Office of the Attorney General
PO Box 6000
Fredericton, NB E3B 5H1
Newfoundland and Labrador
Deputy Minister’s Office
4th Floor, East Block
P.O. Box 8700
St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6
Department of Justice, Legal Services Division
7th Floor Joseph Howe Building
1690 Hollis Street
Halifax, NS B3J 2L6
Prince Edward Island
Department of Justice and Public Safety
Legal Services Section
P.O. Box 2000
95 Rochford St., 4th Fl. Shaw S.
Charlottetown, PEI C1A 7N8
Nunavut Court of Justice
P.O. Box 297
Iqaluit NU X0A 0H0
UNDER THE CONSULAR JURISDICTION OF PHILIPPINE CONSULATE IN VANCOUVER:
If the Notary Public is a lawyer/barrister:
The Law Society of British Columbia
845 Cambie Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 4Z9
If the Notary Public is not a lawyer/barrister:
The Society of Notaries Public of British Columbia
625 Howe Street, Suite 700,
Vancouver, BC V6C 2T6
Department of Justice
1st Floor Stuart M. Hodgson Building,
5009 49th Street
P.O. Box 1320
Yellowknife, NT X1A 2L9
Societies Clerk, Corporate Affairs Territorial
2130 2nd Ave.
Whitehorse, YT Y1A 2C6
Tel: 867-667-5830 or toll-free 1-800-661-0408
UNDER THE CONSULAR JURISDICTION OF PHILIPPINE CONSULATE IN CALGARY
Deputy Provincial Secretary’s Office
Room 111, Bowker Building
9833 109 Street
Edmonton, AB T5K 2E8
Ministry of Justice and Attorney General
800 – 1874 Scarth Street
Regina, SK S4P 4B3
FOR ALL PROVINCES AND TERRITORIES
Global Affairs Canada
JLAC- Authentication Services Section
1st floor (Look for the signs: “JLAC- Authentication Services Section”)
111 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1N 1J1
Tel: 613-944-4000 or toll-free 1-800-267-8376
3. Once the documents have been authenticated by any of the appropriate authority listed above (based on your province or territory), you may send it by mail to the Philippine Embassy in Ottawa along with the following:
a. Postal money order payable to PHILIPPINE EMBASSY, in the amount of C$ 36.25 (per document); or, any bank draft or corporate cheque of this amount;
b. Photocopy of the applicant’s valid passport (applicant’s contact details should be written on this document); and
c. XpressPost self-addressed prepaid envelope (‘Regional’ for residents of Ontario and Quebec; ‘National’ for residents of other Canadian provinces/territories) with a Signature Sticker.
Or, you may also submit the document with the rest of the requirements to the nearest Philippine Consulate in your area. You may provide authorization on your behalf if you will be unable to submit the said documents to the Philippine Embassy in Ottawa or to the nearest Philippine Consulate.
If all these steps sound tedious and stressful to you, JCA LAW OFFICE can do it on your behalf. Our knowledgeable and approachable Filipino-Canadian lawyers provide notarial services and may notarize your documents, and for an additional fee, we may also assist and bring the documents for authentication at the ODS (Official Documents Services) in Toronto downtown and submit the legal documents at the Philippine consulate in Toronto. You may visit our office at 168B Eglinton Ave. East, Toronto, ON M4P 1A6.
You may also book your appointment by calling us at 1-855-522-5290 or book it online:
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**Hague Apostille Convention is an international treaty drafted by the Hague Conference on Private International Law which came into effect in 1965. It governs the process through which a document issued in one country is legally certified for use in other countries. This treaty specifies that any signatory country can issue a certification called an “apostille”. A document that has been “apostilled” is legally certified for use in any country that has signed the Hague Apostille Convention.