Public Notary for documents going to India

When I became a public notary, I was warned that I would be lucky if I saw 2-3 public notary clients a year - I've only been a public notary for a few years and these days I'm seeing up to 5-10 clients a day! How wrong were they?

Of course maybe my approach to notary services is a little different from other public notaries. As you'd know, there aren't many of us around. Compared to the number of lawyers, there are only a few hundred notaries across Sydney - and while that number will increase, it's going to be a relatively small number. Aside from being hard to find, many public notaries seem to not care too much about notary services. Instead they focus on what they consider to be their core business (ie, practising as a lawyer).

In New South Wales and unlike other countries, say for example the United States of America, you need to practice as a lawyer for several years before you can apply to become a public notary. So all public notaries are senior lawyers and presumably would have a law practice which takes up the majority of their day, and if they have time they would then deal with notary services. On the other hand, I consider public notary services as one of my core practice areas. I still provide legal services in various property and business transactions, but public notary services is a large component of what I do - and I think if you read some of my articles, you'll see for yourself. It shows.

I also admit that I'm fortunate that the majority of my faithful clients live in Western Sydney, and they're heavily represented by clients of an Indian origin - all of whom are sending documents back to India. Coming from a migrant family myself, I'm not surprised to see the number of people who are working hard, living modestly and sending money home to their parents to invest in the property market in India.

So if you're signing a power of attorney to authorise your parents to buy or sell property in India on your behalf or apply for a home loan through a local Indian bank on your behalf - you're not alone. Or if you've migrated to Australia and want to convert your Indian drivers licence to a NSW licence, but your name on your drivers licence and your passport are different - that's another common situation that I'm dealing with nearly on a daily basis. I prove that you're the one and the same person so that after you've taken your knowledge test, you can obtain a full licence rather than have to apply for a learners licence and bear those restrictions (again). In all cases, this is the story of Western Sydney.

Unfortunately, the other common story that we see are legal documents for litigation in India - which also seems to be span many years, sometimes decades and is often passed from parents to children. I can't imagine how this kind of litigation is sustainable, financially but also emotionally and mentally. However, I have had clients explain to me that the cost of a lawyer to represent them is in fact a very small fraction of what it would cost in Australia. Other sad stories also include applications under the Hindu Marriage Act for divorces - it's actually more common than I realise. But it happens.

This blog is especially dedicated to my clients from India to help them address their specific and unique issues.

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This blog is supported and maintained by . Phang Legal is a leading provider of notary public services in Sydney. With offices conveniently located in Parramatta, Phang Legal supports and services the Indian community across Sydney with readily available and easily accessible notary public services at highly competitive rates.

For more information regarding notary public services for documents going to India, view our notary publications at

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Ern Phang
Notary Public

Ern Phang is the solicitor director of Phang Legal and a notary public. Ern regularly writes about his experiences as a notary public, including the kinds of problems and solutions that his clients face when sending documents to India.

IMPORTANT: the information in this article is correct at the time of publication, however the law constantly changes. This means you should always refer to the most recent articles because we try to update this blog on a regular basis with the most current information.