Over the past few decades, there has been an increased need for individuals and companies to have Canadian documents authenticated at Global Affairs Canada and then legalized by a diplomatic mission for use in a specific country. In order to speed up the processing of documents, there has been a shift towards using third-party authentication legalization services or process servers to assist with the Canadian Apostille process. Because of this shift, there are a number of authentication and legalization services that have sprung up but are they all the same?
When a Canadian document is to be used in a foreign country, it must proceed through a process known as authentication and legalization. In simplistic terms, it is the affixing of stamps on a document that deems it to be a legitimate Canadian document for use in a specific country. This is also become known as the Canadian Apostille Process.
Unfortunately, there are no regulations or governing body that oversees Canadian authentication legalization, service providers. There is no quantifiable criteria that need to be met in order for someone to call themselves an expert, the first company to offer this kind of service, the best in this area, etc. What differentiates one Canadian authentication legalization service from another comes down to two important variables. These variables are knowledge base and cost of services to be provided.
Regarding knowledge base what kind of experience does one company have in terms of the documents being processed at Global Affairs Canada? Are original documents acceptable, certified copies, or notarized copies? Are there any special circumstances that may prevent a document from being authenticated? Within the knowledge base, the skillset is the understanding of the unique requirements for legalization at a particular Embassy or Consular Office. What are the time requirements imposed by a particular diplomatic mission and how might that impact the fees to be charged for services to be rendered? These are some of the questions that would be useful to know when determining whether an authentication legalization service company is knowledgeable in this space.
All things considered, it would be reasonable to expect that the fees charged by the Canadian authentication legalization services would be relatively similar. We have found that the service fees vary dramatically from one company to the next. One should undertake some basic due diligence when determining which Authentication Legalization Services are right for them. High fees are not typically necessary when having your documents proceed through the Canadian Apostille process.
Being able to assist with the authentication and legalization of Canadian documents for use abroad requires specialized knowledge of what is required by Global Affairs Canada as well as the various diplomatic missions. In some cases, it can be difficult to source accurate information. However, our office stays on top of the changing requirements. We are familiar with such things as the time it may take a diplomatic mission to complete the legalization process. We believe in being client-focused and have developed a method that we refer to as The Completion Time Method. This is employed when determining the possible fee options available to a client when one considers the total time required to complete both the authentication with Global Affairs and legalization at a particular Embassy. The end result is cost savings for our clients as we strive to match the processing of their documents with their specific needs. As our approach is quite unique, we strive to develop relationships and it does not matter if it is a one-time thing or something that is ongoing.
At Capital Authentication we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your unique situation. Our office strives to develop relationships. It does not matter if our association is a one-time thing or something that is ongoing. We are confident that we can assist in determining the best course of action for having your Canadian documents authenticated and legalized efficiently and in a very cost-effective manner.