Certifying Documents

Copies of documents provided in support of an application, or other purpose required by the National Law, must be certified as true copies of the original documents.

Certified copies will only be accepted in hard copy by mail or in person (not by fax, email, etc). Photocopies of previously certified documents will not be accepted. 

Who can certify documents?

In Australia, the following people are authorised to certify documents:

  • Health professions: Chiropractor, Dentist, Medical practitioner, Nurse, Optometrist, Pharmacist, Physiotherapist, Psychologist1
  • Legal professions: Legal practitioner, Patent attorney, Trade marks attorney
  • Court positions: Bailiff, Justice of the Peace, Judge, Magistrate, Registrar, or Deputy Registrar, Clerk, Master of a court, CEO of a Commonwealth court
  • Commissioner for Affidavits, or Commissioner for Declarations (dependent on jurisdictions)
  • Government representatives (elected): Federal, State or Territory or Local
  • Public servants: Federal, State or Territory or Local – employed for five years or more.
  • Permanent employees of the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency
  • Bank officer, building society officer, credit union officer, finance company officer – employed for five years or more
  • Veterinary surgeon
  • Accountant (member of ICA, ASA, IPA or CPA, ATMA, NTAA)
  • Minister of religion, or marriage celebrant
  • Member of:
    • Chartered Secretaries Australia
    • Engineers Australia, other than at the grade of student
    • Australian Defence Force (an officer; or a non-commissioned officer with 5+ years of continuous service; a warrant officer)
    • Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
  • Notary public
  • Holder of a statutory office not specified in another item in this Part
  • Police officer
  • Sheriff or Sheriff’s officer
  • Teacher (full-time) at a school or tertiary education institution

Outside Australia, the following people are authorised to certify documents:

  • Justice of the Peace
  • Notary public
  • Australian Consular Officer or Australian Diplomatic Officer (within the meaning of the Consular Fees Act 1955)
  • Employee of the Commonwealth or the Australian Trade Commission who works outside Australia.

What do the above authorised officers need to do to certify your documents?

An Authorised Officer should do the following in the presence of the applicant:

  • Certify that each document is a true copy of the original.
  • Certify that the photograph on photographic documentation (e.g. licence or passport) is a true likeness of the applicant.
  • Witness the signature of the applicant.

Certified documents must:

  • Be initialled on every page by the Authorised Officer.
  • Annotated on the last page as appropriate e.g. “I have sighted the original document and certify this to be a true copy of the original” and signed by the Authorised Officer.
  • List the name, date of certification, and contact phone number and profession/position number (if relevant) and have the stamp or seal of the Authorised Officer (if relevant) applied

When are documents not required to be certified?

If your application supports online upload of documentation, then these documents are generally not required to be certified. Please refer to the online application for detailed information of these requirements. 

Page reviewed 30/01/2019