Member of the Notaries Society
Neil Oakes

The notarial profession is by far the oldest branch of the legal profession in England and Wales. A notary, also known as a notary public, is a qualified legal official appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

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Powers of Attorney for India

With travel being so difficult at the moment  it is no surprise that I have seen a significant upturn in the numbers of clients seeking to notarise Powers of Attorney for use in India.  This leads me on to writing some notes concerning legalisation requirements for documents notarised by an English notary that are to be used in India.

Documents for use in India should be legalised with an apostille certificate obtained from the United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office, though it seems that there are quite diverse attitudes to legalisation throughout the sub-continent. Some clients are told that legalisation is not required; some that an apostille should be obtained; some that an apostille is not necessary but that the documents should be presented at the Indian High Commission in London for legalisation; and yet others that both an apostille and legalisation at the High Commission is necessary. It seems that this comes down to the requirements of individual registrars in India.

For the record, the Indian High Commission’s own website says that documents do not need to be sent there and that legalisation at the High Commission is completely unnecessary.

The issue of legalisation is therefore rather more complicated than it should be. I strongly recommend that clients check with their lawyer in India as to the exact requirements of legalisation. He/she will know the requirements of the local registrars. Failure to have the document legalised as required may lead to it being rejected, thus delaying the transaction for which the document is required.

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