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Signing of documents when you are abroad

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Sigining of documentsAdv. Pratibha Bangera (Advocate and legal Expert in litigation and commercial law) explains process to attest documents when you are out of the country with our Editor-in-Chief Dr Vaidehi Taman.

Can an Indian sign a legal document outside India?

Yes for purpose of attestation of documents one can visit the Indian embassy and get it attested, provided these documents are to be used for purpose of legal filing or representation in India. If a person is travelling out of India or is a student or temporarily residing out of India, he can visit the Indian embassy office in that country with prior appointment and get his documents “attested” before the Consulate General of India.

What is Attestation?

It is a procedure to verify the authenticity of documents to be submitted before any authority or court.

What is the process involved for authentication of such documents?

The Consulate General of India has the power to verify the address and id proof of the citizen by verification of original passport along with the copy submitted and thereafter attest the documents taken before him. Documents such as Power of Attorney or court affidavits or petitions can be attested for purpose of identification and verification. The office of the Consulate General will do the same before affixing stamp and seal of the Indian Consulate on documents required to be attested.

Can a visiting foreigner sign a document to be produced in his country at the Indian Consulate?

No. A foreigner can visit the Consulate of his own country in India and attest it as per norms of his country and either send documents by Indian post or courier to his representative in his country for legal purposes.

How does the Indian Consulate verify any Indian who wants to sign a document before them?

The Passport of such Indian is required along with a passport size photograph of the person signing before the Indian Consulate General. The Consulate general may also require a copy of the address proof and id proof along with passport copies for purpose of records.

What is the validity of such documents?

The documents attested before the Consulate general are valid and cannot be challenged in any court of law unless the papers or stamps are forged

What is the time taken for this process?

In most countries there are proper website of the Indian Consulate in such country and all procedures are mentioned for seeking date of appointment or interview and verification.

Can a marriage be registered by the Consulate General?

No. Registration process can be done online but a certificate of marriage is given only by the Registrar of marriages. The bride and bride groom will have to visit the office of registrar of marriages personally or even register before their local municipal authority if there is a section assigned for registration of marriage after their marriage is conducted.

Can a person file a court case by attesting his court affidavits before Consulate General ?

Yes one can get such documents attested however all such petitions should be accompanied by a constituted attorney or “power of attorney holder” (adult Indian relative or friend or employee) and in some cases you may also need permission of the court to present such petitions through the power of attorney holder in India.

Can a lawyer be a power of attorney holder?

No a lawyer cannot be made a power of attorney holder for legal representation. Lawyer can be appointed to represent a case or for identification of person but lawyer cannot be made a constituted attorney.

Can a person purchase a property before the Consulate General?

Property cannot be registered before a Consulate General. Property purchase is subject to payment of government valuation of property by way of stamp duty and registration fees and property can be registered only before at the office of Sub Registrar of Assurances assigned as per pin code of the area of the property situated.

Can a company attest its documents at the Consulate?

The authorized signatory can represent the company after passing necessary board resolution and by way of power of attorney given by company to represent along with the company seal and board resolution and authority letter of Company may be required.

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Vaidehi Taman
Vaidehi Taman
Vaidehi Taman an Accredited Journalist from Maharashtra is bestowed with three Honourary Doctorate in Journalism. Vaidehi has been an active journalist for the past 21 years, and is also the founding editor of an English daily tabloid – Afternoon Voice, a Marathi web portal – Mumbai Manoos, and The Democracy digital video news portal is her brain child. Vaidehi has three books in her name, "Sikhism vs Sickism", "Life Beyond Complications" and "Vedanti". She is an EC Council Certified Ethical Hacker, OSCP offensive securities, Certified Security Analyst and Licensed Penetration Tester that caters to her freelance jobs.
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