Certified copy requirements in commercial transactions
Certified copy requirements in commercial transactions

The following Commercial practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Certified copy requirements in commercial transactions
  • What is a certified copy?
  • When is a certified copy required?
  • Who can certify a document?
  • What format should a certified copy take?
  • Use of certified copies internationally
  • Use of certified copies in evidence

This practice note examines what a certified copy is, when a certified copy is required, who can certify a document and what format the certification should take, use of certified copies internationally and use of certified copies in evidence.

What is a certified copy?

A certified copy is an accurate, complete and current copy (usually a photocopy) of an original document. The certified copy will include a statement that it is a true copy of the original as at the date certified. It does not certify that the original document is genuine, only that it is a true copy of the original.

When is a certified copy required?

There are numerous personal and business reasons for obtaining a certified copy of a document. For example, when applying for a loan the lender may require certified copies of photographic ID (passport or driving licence) and a recent utility bill. A certified copy of a marriage certificate or change of name deed may be required in order to up date any official records following a name change.

Certified copies are also required in the context of commercial transactions, including:

  1. a Certificate of the Register (which is certified) is required to register a piece of intellectual property outside the UK—see Get copies of patent, trade mark or design registration documents

  2. a Certificate of the Register is also required to prove legal ownership

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