Most people think that the terms “notarization” and “attestation” mean the same thing. I’m sorry to break it to you, but that is not the case. The sole individual authorized to conduct a notarization is a notary public commissioned by the province or the country, but anyone across the country can provide an attestation. Words like “notarization” and “attestation” usually pop up when discussing critical legal documents; however, what exactly are they, and how are they distinct? Let’s break all this into simple words.

The Basics- Attestation Vs. Notarization:


Attestation is witnessing the signing of a document by two parties by a person not directly involved in the transaction. A third person(who does the attestation) may verify the document’s contents and attest to the fact that they witnessed the two parties signing the document.

Having documents attested by a witness is standard practice when dealing with high-value transactions. This procedure is essential when relocating to a new country for an extended period so that the local authorities can rely on your identity as legitimate. Having your documents certified also ensures they can be lawfully used in your new home in the new province or country. 


On the contrary, notarization verifies the authenticity of the documents in question, the validity of the signatures, and the informed consent of the parties involved. The notarization process, which involves a third party, usually a notary public, achieves unbiased verification of your documents. The primary goal of having documents or certificates notarized is to make them legitimate and impossible to commit fraud by using them.

The notarization process, unlike attestation, also takes into account whether any of the participants involved appear anxious, uncertain, or pressurized. A professional at the notary public checks if everyone involved is psychologically capable of signing a legitimate document. This vital step aids in securing individuals who are exploited for being elderly, mentally sick, or belonging to another vulnerable demographic.

What Happens in Attestation and Notarization?


A third-party witness who isn’t directly engaged with your document attests to it. They simply mean, yes, they saw you sign. 

This attestation is important because it helps agreements in corporate and personal documents become official. This is the same as having a third person vouch for you.

Usually, the most common documents you will need to get attested are the following:

  • Personal documents, including birth certificates, marriage certificates, divorce certificates, or medical documents.
  • Educational documents like degrees, diplomas, and certificates. 
  • Commercial documents like invoices, power of attorney, employment status, etc. 


At a notary public, a professional first checks your identity and makes sure you are who you say you are. Next, they check your document and its legality. Finally, if they feel the document is legit, they sign it and put a special stamp over it. 

Notarization is critical for official papers, agreements, and contracts since it provides a seal of approval for your document ensuring it is a legitimate one. 

The most common documents notarized are the following:

  • Legal agreements
  • Affidavits
  • Deeds
  • Mortgages 
  • Power of Attorneys
  • Wills
  • Loan documents, and more.

Key Takeaways:

Notary Offers Legal Assurance:

When you get a document notarized by a notary public, a qualified notary public professional will evaluate its authenticity, ensure it complies with all applicable laws of the province, and then certify it with a signature and a seal. This is an essential step in ensuring that each of your notarized documents is valid under law.

Attestation Offers Witnessing Signatures:

During attestation, a third party is present when you sign a document and then add their signature to verify their presence. Having a witness present and getting attestation is crucial in many contexts, including personal, business, professional, and other agreements where the reliability of signatures is at stake.

Importance of Choosing the Right One:

In today’s environment of frequent globalization and cross-border transactions, it is vital to comprehend the difference between attestation and notarization. Failure to choose the right procedure can result in legal problems, delays, or even the rejection of important documents in the legal world. 

Notarize With Confidence- The Notary Guy: Your Trust Partner in the Legal Realm

Remembering the distinction between notarization and attestation the next time you must verify a vital document is critical. An attestation is a simple procedure when a witness’s signature is required to complete a document’s requirements. However, if you want to make sure no one is trying to fraud the other person, you’ll need to see a state-commissioned notary—where we come to help. 

Regardless of how far you are, The Notary Guy can help you with in-person or online notarization, ensuring your documents are legally binding.

At The Notary Guy, we are committed to offering you excellent services that promise peace of mind in every signature. So, place your trust in us and experience the epitome of professionalism and efficiency in the intricacies of the legal world. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. How does online notarization work?

Many countries, including Canada, recognize online notarization, also called remote or mobile notarization. In most cases, a secure web platform establishes a network, and the notary uses digital signature witnessing and identification verification to seal the document digitally. However, check the legislation regulating online notarization to ensure you comply with your area’s local restrictions.

  1. Which type of documents typically require notarization?

The documents that usually require notarization include affidavits, deeds, wills, power of attorney, and more. 

  1. How can I find a notary service near me?

Notary public services can be found in various ways, including online websites like Google, online directories, local banks, and government offices in your area. Furthermore, if going to a notary public isn’t feasible, you can opt for other convenient choices, such as online or mobile notarization. 

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