Expert notary service

A Notary Public fulfils an important position as a public officer, providing a range of legal services relating to Powers of Attorney, foreign and international business, deeds and estates. 

The powers of a Notary Public include dealing with non-contentious legal matters of all kinds, which include preparing and witnessing legal documents for overseas use.

There can be many reasons why you may need to enlist the services of a Notary Public, and Smith Partnership’s Darren Perry offers extensive experience dealing with a variety of notary matters. Having been active in the legal sector for more than three decades, his expertise has helped countless clients overcome the legal obstacles they’ve been faced with.

To find out more about our notary services, feel free to contact our team today.

What is a Notary Public?

A Notary Public is a qualified legal professional who can authenticate and witness a wide range of legal documents. Notaries may act on behalf of both private individuals and businesses, offering legal services relating to all manner of transactions, documents and events.

Governed by The Notaries Society, a Notary Public is a member of the third and oldest branch of the legal profession in England and Wales, and there are only around 770 Notary Publics currently practising in both of those countries combined.

What Services Does a Notary Public Provide?

A Notary can authenticate and witness most legal documents as well as being able to obtain Apostilles and arrange Legalisation where needed.

One of the most common scenarios where you may require a Notary’s services is when you possess documentation that needs to be fit for use abroad. The authorities of the relevant country can reference a Notary’s signature and seal for the purposes of verification, ensuring that the documents in question meet legal requirements.

The specific legal services provided by a Notary may vary depending on whether the client is an individual or a business. Let’s take a look at each of the services in turn.

Notary Services for Individuals

Notaries offer individuals a wide range of services to meet their legal needs, which may relate to:

  • Setting up a Power of Attorney, apostille and legalisations
  • The transfer of land, houses or shares
  • Providing certified copies of documents such as exam certificates
  • Statutory declarations, oaths
  • Declarations of single status upon marriage or permission to let one parent travel with children
  • Copies of passports, for example for the purposes of opening a bank account
  • Lost passports, share certificates or any other type of document
  • Preparing any other documentation which requires a Notary Public stamp for foreign use

Notary Public Services for Businesses

In turn, Notaries are also able to provide legal assistance to businesses, which could include:

  • Assignments or registration of trademarks
  • Apostille and legalisation services
  • Notarising business documentation
  • Affidavits, statutory declarations and sworn statements
  • Share issues certified by a Notary Public
  • The transaction, transfer, purchase and sale of property
  • Witnessing a Power of Attorney
  • Preparing any other documentation which requires a Notary Public stamp for foreign use

Legalisation and Apostille: What do They Mean?

Legal documents may need to be notarised for them to be considered legal in foreign countries. The term ‘legalisation’ refers to the process of authentication conducted by the Foreign Office, embassy or consulate, during which authorities check whether the Notary’s signature is genuine.

The specific requirements for legalisation vary from country to country. In some cases, foreign authorities may also perform checks to ensure the signature matches the one held in their records. Documents that are considered satisfactory are attached with a certificate known as an ‘apostille’, confirming their authenticity.

How is a Notary Public Different from a Solicitor?

Although a Notary Public shares a number of similarities with a solicitor, Notary Publics are much less common within the legal sector. This is due to the fact that Notaries often focus on a more specialised area, which is often concerned with preparing and witnessing legal documentation for foreign use. Due to their international focus, documents completed by a Notary are accepted and recognised around the world.

Solicitors make up a significant portion of professionals working in the legal sector. Generally speaking, solicitors may focus on delivering a broader range of legal services. Having said that, many Notary Publics are also practicing solicitors.

How We Can Help

The team at Smith Partnership prides itself on offering practical and jargon-free legal advice across each of our offices in Derby, Leicester, Burton on Trent, Swadlincote and Stoke-on-Trent.

Enjoying a reputation as a leading Notary Public in Derby, the East Midlands and further afield, our in-house Notary Darren Perry draws on a wealth of expertise to meet your legal needs. We recognise the importance of addressing notarial matters quickly and effectively, and our team is on hand to offer you a first-class service whenever you need it.

As one of the largest law firms in the East Midlands, our solicitors regularly advise clients either face to face, online or via telephone. As a result, we can help you get expert advice from a Notary Public UK-wide.

Contact our team today

To find out how our expert team of solicitors can help you, contact us today on 0330 123 1229, send us an email via or complete our contact form.


A qualified legal professional who is a member of the third and oldest branch of the legal profession in England and Wales.

Yes, a document certified to be a true copy by a Notary is acceptable in any country in the world.

A Notary can authenticate and witness most legal documents as well as being able to obtain Apostilles and arrange legalisation where required.

A Notary Public is a qualified legal professional who holds an internationally recognised public office.