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Information Note - Changes to notarial and documentary services

Changes to the notarial and documentary services offered at our missions overseas

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

FCO Consular
FCO Consular sign
  1. Following a recent review of consular services offered by our Embassies and Consulates overseas, we have made changes to the notarial and documentary services offered at our missions overseas. This includes the British High Commission in Kenya.

  2. In the past, British Embassies overseas have been able to assist with a number of notarial and documentary services. This traditionally has included witnessing signatures, making certified copies of documents (e.g. UK passports, educational certificates, UK driving licenses) and confirming overseas residency status. Following our review, we have made the following policy changes:

    • Witness signatures and certifying copies of documentation, including UK passports. Our missions overseas are working to identify alternative providers to carry out this type of work. Where private sector alternatives exist (e.g. notary publics, lawyers, solicitors etc) our staff will no longer provide these services and will re-direct customers to an alternative providers.
  • Confirming Residency Requirements or identity: Our missions overseas are unable to confirm customer residency details or confirm identity, as we do not hold this type of information.

These changes are part of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Consular Strategy (2013-2016) which was launched by the British Foreign Secretary in April 2013. The new strategy will focus more time on customers who needs it most, or who are most at risk because of who they are or where they are. To achieve this we need to make better use of our limited resources.

You can find more information about the services we offer, include the original version of this note, on our website

Prepared by the British High Commission in Nairobi

June 2013

Published 16 August 2013