A 'certified copy' of an original document is a copy that has been verified as being a true copy of an original document such as a:

  • birth certificate
  • driver’s licence
  • passport.

This is done by a person who is authorised to certify copies of original documents.

How to have copies of original documents certified 

Different organisations may have their own requirements for certifying a copy. Check first before you follow this process.

Find an authorised certifier

A complete list of people authorised to make certified copies is below.

 

List of people authorised to certify copies of original documents

Under Section 39 of the Oaths and Affirmations Act 2018 (as of 1 March 2019) the list of persons who may certify copies of original documents includes:

  • A person currently licensed or registered to practice in Australia as one of the following occupations:
    • Architect
    • Chiropractor
    • Conveyancer
    • Dentist
    • Financial adviser or financial planner
    • Legal practitioner
    • Medical practitioner
    • Midwife
    • Migration agent
    • Nurse
    • Occupational therapist
    • Optometrist
    • Patent attorney
    • Pharmacist
    • Physiotherapist
    • Psychologist
    • Trade marks attorney
    • Veterinary surgeon
  • An accountant who meets at least one of the following criteria:
    • Fellow of the National Tax Accountants’ Association
    • Member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand
    • Member of the Association of Taxation and Management Accountants
    • Member of CPA Australia
    • Member of the Institute of Public Accountants
  • Agent of the Australian Postal Corporation who is in charge of an office supplying postal services to the public
  • Australian Public Service employee engaged on an ongoing basis with 5 or more years of continuous service who is not otherwise authorised
  • Australian Consular Officer or Australian Diplomatic Officer
  • Bailiff
  • Bank officer with 5 or more continuous years of service
  • Building society officer with 5 or more years of continuous service
  • Chief executive officer of a Commonwealth court
  • Clerk of a court
  • Commissioner for Affidavits
  • Commissioner for Declarations
  • Credit union officer with 5 or more years of continuous service
  • Employee of a Commonwealth authority engaged on a permanent basis with 5 or more years of continuous service who is not otherwise authorised
  • Employee of the Australian Trade and Investment Commission who is authorised in writing by the Secretary of DFAT to collect fees under s 3(d) of the Consular Fees Act 1955, if at a place outside Australia and in the course of the employee’s duties at that place
  • Employee of the Commonwealth who is authorised in writing by the Secretary of DFAT to collect fees under s 3(d) of the Consular Fees Act 1955, if at a place outside Australia and in the course of the employee’s duties at that place
  • An engineer who meets at least one of the following criteria:
    • A member of Engineers Australia, other than a student
    • A Registered Professional Engineer of Professionals Australia
    • Registered as an engineer under a law of the Commonwealth or a State or Territory
    • Registered on the National Engineering Register by Engineers Australia
  • Finance company officer with 5 or more years of continuous service
  • Holder of a Commonwealth statutory office not otherwise specified
    • For example, Director of the Australian Institute of Family Studies
  • IBAC Officers
  • Judge
  • Justice of the Peace
  • Local government Councillor
  • Magistrate
  • Registered marriage celebrant
  • Master of a court
  • Member of the Australian Defence Force who meets at least one of the following criteria:
    • An officer
    • A non-commissioned officer with 5 or more years of continuous service
    • A warrant officer
  • Member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
  • Member of the Governance Institute of Australia Ltd
  • Member of the Parliament of a State
  • Member of a Territory legislature
  • Member of a local government authority
  • Registered minister of religion
  • Notary public, including a notary public exercising functions at a place outside either the Commonwealth or the external Territories of the Commonwealth
  • Permanent employee of the Australian Postal Corporation with 5 or more years continuous service who is employed in an office providing postal services to the public
  • Permanent employee with 5 or more years of continuous service who is not otherwise specified, if employed at one of the following:
    • State
    • Territory
    • State authority
    • Territory authority
    • Local government authority
  • Police officer
  • Police reservist
  • Protective service officer (PSO)
  • Registrar, or Deputy Registrar, of a court
  • A school principal
  • Senior executive employee of a Commonwealth authority
  • Senior executive employee of a State or Territory
  • Senior Executive Service employee of the Commonwealth
  • Sheriff
  • Sheriff’s officer
  • State Trustees officer or employee with a classification level of 2 or above
  • Teacher employed on a permanent full-time or part-time basis at a school or tertiary education institution
  • Transport Accident Commission officer or employee with a classification of level 2 or above
  • VicRoads officer or employee with a classification of level 2 or above
  • Victorian Inspectorate Officer
  • A Victorian Public Service employee with a prescribed classification level of 2 or above
    •  For example, a project officer employed as a VPS4 or an administrative assistant employed as a VPS2
  • Victorian WorkCover Authority officer or employee with a classification of band 2 or above
  • Any authorised affidavit taker, including:
    • A judicial officer
      • For example, a judge or magistrate
    • An associate to a judicial officer
    • An honorary justice
    • The prothonotary or a deputy prothonotary of the Supreme Court
    • The registrar of probates or an assistant registrar of probates
    • The registrar or a deputy registrar of the County Court
    • The principal registrar, a registrar or a deputy registrar of the Magistrates’ Court
    • The principal registrar, a registrar or a deputy registrar of the Children’s Court
    • The principal registrar, a registrar or a deputy registrar of VCAT
    • The principal registrar or a registrar of the Coroners Court
    • A member of VCAT
    • A member or former member of either House of the Parliament of Victoria
    • A member or former member of either House of the Parliament of the Commonwealth
    • A public notary
    • A senior officer of a Victorian municipal Council who meets one of the following criteria:
      • Chief Executive Officer
      • A member of Council staff with management responsibilities and reporting directly to the Chief Executive Officer
      • Any other member of Council staff earning a salary of at least $124,000 (or a higher threshold, if specified by the Minister under s 97B of the Local Government Act 1989)
    • A fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives (Victoria)
    • A person acting judicially
      • For example, an arbitrator or any person or body with authority to hear, receive and examine evidence
    • Any other officer or person empowered, authorised or permitted by or under any Act or rules of a court or rules of a tribunal to administer affidavits

Visit a certifier

Bring both an original and a copy of the original to the certifier.

The certifier will:

  1. examine the original to ensure it is not a copy or forgery
  2. examine the copy to ensure it is identical to the original. A copy can be considered identical even if it is a different size or colour, so long as that does not result in the loss of any material information.

The certifier will then write or stamp the copy with the words: “Certified to be a true copy of the original seen by me.” They will sign and date the copy, and write or stamp their name, personal or professional address and qualification.

If there are multiple pages to the copy, the certifier will sign or initial and number all pages.

The copy has now been certified.

For more information

See the Frequently Asked Questions about Oaths, Affirmations, Affidavits, Statutory Declarations and Certifications.