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Notary services


Notary services



The Notarial Service of the Consular Office is authorized to receive documents pertinent to an individual’s life and death, to maintain records thereof and issue copies and extracts. The Notarial Service is available only for Italian citizens who are temporarily out of the country or who reside permanently abroad.


The most frequently requested services are

  • Power of Attorney
  • Will
  • Public instruments
  • Certification



A Power of Attorney (POA) is a legal instrument giving one person (the agent) the power to act on behalf of another person (the principal) in private affairs, business or other legal matters (for example: sell or purchase, administer, make donations, accept donations, create or dissolve companies, request the publication of marriage banns, etc.)

There are two types of Power of Attorney:

General POA: the principal entrusts to the agent the management of all his/her/their affairs, both present and future. A general POA is granted for an indefinite period of time.

Special POA: the principal entrusts the agent with the management of a specific part of his/her/their affairs. The Special POA ceases in effect upon the conclusion of the task for which the POA was issued.

Both types of POAs may be revoked.


For Italian citizens only

If you need to draft a POA with validity in Italy, please send an email to with the following information: name and surname of the principal, date and place of birth, current address, and type of POA required. Please attach a draft of the POA (in Microsoft Word format) containing the necessary information.

The Consular Office will reply with an appointment date and time for the in-person signature of the POA. Please bring a valid identification document with you.

The fee for the service is listed here.

(art. 17A for a general POA; art. 18A for a special POA, art.24 signature certification for a holograph POA).


For citizens of other countries (including Italy)

If you need to draft a POA with validity in Italy, you must do so with a Canadian lawyer/notary and subsequently have the signature of the said lawyer/notary certified by the Consular Office.

In order to be certified, a specimen of the said signature must on file at the Consular Office. See attached list.

If there is no signature specimen on file, the signature must be certified by Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the signature of the certifying officer at GAC must in turn be certified by the Consular Office.

POAs in English or French must be translated into Italian.

For translation services you may contact:

ATIO (Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario). For information about ATIO, visit the website, call the 1-800-234-5030 or e-mail

The Consular Office will certify the translator’s signature.

The fee for the service is listed here.

(art. 69 certification of legal instruments and signatures)


Among the services provided by the Notarial Service of a Consular Office is the drafting of the last will and testament of persons who are abroad.

A public will is the declaration of a testator’s last will and testament made to a consular officer with notarial duties, in written form and in the presence of two witnesses. For a private will, the service provided will be limited to the formal receipt of the document (the contents of which will remain private) and its deposit with the Consular Office.

A holograph (handwritten) will does not require any action on the part of an officer of the Consular Office and may be deposited anywhere and with anyone. Often this type of will is deposited with the Notarial Service for safekeeping and ready access following the death of the testator.



These are a type of legal instrument required by law for certain official acts (for example, gifts or donations).



Certification services are usually provided by an officer of the Consular Office but may also be provided by specially authorized staff of the Notarial Service; they are provided specifically for:

  • SIGNATURE CERTIFICATION: the declaration by a consular officer that the signature on a given document is genuine. This must be done in person at the Notarial Service; you must bring an identification document and your social insurance or codice fiscale number;
  • PHOTOGRAPH CERTIFICATION: this must be done in person at the Notarial Service; you must bring an identification document and three identical photographs.


Self-certification is “certification by the individual, and replaces standard certification” (DPR 445/2000). It gives the individual citizen the opportunity to provide the same information provided by a public entity, but in a simplified manner. For self-certification, the individual drafts and signs his/her/their own statement of facts, status, and personal details for use in interactions with government officials and providers of government services.

Self-certification for interactions with private individuals or entities are accepted at the discretion of the said private entity.

On January 01, 2012, law n.183/12.11.2011 entered into effect providing for new rules (art.15) governing certificates and self-certification. As of that date, government offices may no longer request or accept third-party certificates, and may only accept self-certification. Third-party certificates will only be valid between private subjects.

All Italian citizens and citizens of European Union (EU) countries may use self-certification. The option of self-certification is also available to citizens of countries outside the EU who are legal residents of Italy, limited to information that is verifiable or certifiable in Italy by government offices.

Self-certification can be used in interactions with government offices and with providers of government services.

Self-certifications, as per articles 46 and 47 of Law n.445/2000, may be signed in front of the delegated public official or may be submitted or forwarded previously signed provided that they are accompanied by a non-certified copy of an identification document of the person self-certifying. They cannot be used in interactions with private organizations unless the said organization consents thereto or before judicial authorities in the exercise of their judicial duties.

Self-certification may be used for all statements of personal status, events, and facts of which the individual has direct knowledge. The said declaration can also refer to circumstances pertaining to other individuals of whom the declarer has direct knowledge; it can also certify copies of original certificates or documents kept or issued by a government office, copies of publications, of diplomas or degrees or service records, or copies of taxation records that are kept by private bodies.

Self-certification (art.46 of DPR 445/2000) can replace the standard third-party certificates for:

  • fulfillment or non-fulfillment of military duty, including as envisaged at art. 77 of DPR n. 237/64, as modified by art. 22 of law 958/86;
  • absence of criminal conviction;
  • fulfillment of specific fiscal obligation(s), with amount;
  • citizenship;
  • social insurance number or VAT identification number;
  • date and place of birth;
  • death of a spouse, ancestor or descendent;
  • university or state examinations taken;
  • certificate of life (esistenza in vita);
  • voting rights and ability to hold elected office;
  • registration on public service rolls or lists;
  • membership in associations or social groups of various types;
  • birth of a child;
  • military service status;
  • professional qualifications or degrees;
  • homemaker status;
  • status of legal representative, guardian, trustee and other similar capacities, for individuals or legal entities;
  • retired status and pension category;
  • student status;dependent status;
  • tax registry data;
  • certificate of residence;
  • income or financial information required for eligibility for benefits or other support provided by special legislation;
  • marital status (single, married or widowed);
  • employment status;
  • family composition;
  • possession of diploma or license;
  • training or re-training certificates;
  • technical diplomas;
  • diplomas or degrees obtained;
  • all vital statistics information of which the individual has direct knowledge.

Are there cases in which self-certification is NOT accepted?

Yes. Self-certification is not accepted for the following types of certificates:

  • medical;
  • health;
  • veterinary;
  • of origin;
  • EC conformity;
  • trademarks or patents.

How to provide Self-certification:

Self-certification can consist of a certificate written and signed by the individual or he/she/they may use a specific self-certification form (signatures do not need to be witnessed.)

Also, documents, certificates, etc., may be forward directly to Italian government offices via fax, post, or email.

In cases where the public office doubts the veracity of the self-certification, the office is responsible for verification.

False statements or declarations are punishable by law according to the criminal code (art. 76 DPR 445/2000). The individual also forfeits any benefits acquired as a result of the false statement.


Uses of self-certification:

Individuals may use self-certification for all statuses, facts, and personal information that are not certifiable by a government authority, pursuant to art.47 of DPR 445/2000. The said self-certification can refer to circumstances regarding other individuals of whom the declarer has direct knowledge, and may also be used to certify the copy of a publication.

Self-certification may be made by declaring facts, statuses or personal information of which the declarer has direct knowledge before a public official delegated to receive such documents, or before a notary, municipal official or other officer so delegated by the mayor. In the case of facts, statuses or personal information certifiable by another government office, if the administration deems it necessary to verify the veracity of the statements, it has 15 days from the date of the declaration to request the necessary documentation.


Validity of self-certification standard certificates:

Self-certification declarations have the same value as the documents they replace.

Usually, the said certificates are valid for six months from the date of issue, unless a longer period of validity is accorded by law or other regulation. The validity of certain certificates can be extended if the declarer states that the information contained therein has not changed and signs the declaration to that effect. Certificates and declarations attesting to personal details that are not subject to change (birth, death, degrees and diplomas, etc.) have no expiry.


Cases in which a government office CANNOT request certification from individuals:

For the verification of information regarding surname, name, date and place of birth, citizenship, marital status, and place of residence, the presentation of an identification document is sufficient.

The information can be registered by means of an uncertified photocopy of the said document. If the document is expired, the bearer must declare, on the margins of the photocopy, that the information in the document has not changed since the date of issue.

Sanctions for making false statements

If the government office has doubts regarding the veracity of the self-certification, it is responsible for verification. False statements are punishable by law according to the criminal code (art. 76 DPR 445/2000). The declarer also forfeits any benefits acquired as a result of the false statement.

The following are valid identification documents:

  • Passport;
  • Driver’s License;
  • Boating license;
  • Pension booklet (libretto di pensione);
  • License to operate heating systems;
  • Firearms permit;
  • Identification documents issued by government offices, with photograph and official stamp.

If the document is expired, the bearer must declare, on the photocopy of the document, that the information has not changed.