Certification of documents

Cultural speech is one of the main features of a well-mannered, educated person. The criteria for a competent speech are expressiveness, richness of language, consistency, purity, and also relevance. It is important not only not to litter your speech with verbal rubbish, jargon and vulgarism, but also to use words and terms in their correct meaning.

In the course of translation activities, the employees of our bureau often face the question of clients: “How to correctly say:” certification of documents “or maybe” certification of documents? “

Let’s try to reveal the similarities and differences of these concepts and explain their terminological features and competent application.

According to Ozhegov’s dictionary of Soviet times in 1986, the verb “assure” has an indefinite form “assure” and is used in two meanings:

1. In the meaning of “to assure, to convince whom? in what? in the authenticity of something, to vouch for someone (for something). Can be used with the union of what?


It is necessary to assure the public of the correctness of the decision taken.
I assure you that the reporting data is correct.
The witness assured that there was no collision with a pedestrian.
The noun “assurance” is also used in the same meaning:
Please accept our assurances that we fully support you.
We do not need verbal assurance, but a letter of guarantee.
2. In the meaning of “to certify the correctness of something, the truth, authenticity, to seal with a signature, seal.”


Where can I cheaply certify a copy of the document?
The head of the department certified the certificate with a signature and seal.
The noun “certification” denotes an action and is used only in the second sense. That is, in the meaning of “to certify the correctness of something, the truth, authenticity, seal with a signature, seal.”

The notary certified the copies of the documents.
To obtain a work visa, you need a notarized certificate from the bank.
Similar data are presented in modern electronic encyclopedias of the Russian language.

However, in ordinary colloquial speech, such a word as “assurance” hurts the ear for many and seems wrong. Most often, when we visit a notary office with documents, in our speech we use the expression – certification of documents.

This is confirmed by the results of queries in search engines.

For one and the same time period, Yandex issues 18055 search results for a request for “certification of documents”, and 442 for a request for “certification of documents”, that is, almost forty times less. Similarly, for the request “notarization” – we get 30,088 search results, for the request “notarization” – 154 results. Here the difference is even more significant.

As for the notary, in the course of his activities, in accordance with the legislation, he performs the following actions:

It certifies transactions, facts, decisions of authorities, the identity of the signature, the equivalence of paper and electronic documents, the time of transfer of the document.

Business man and woman sitting at the lawyers’s desk and signing important documents, hands top view, unrecognizable people

Proves the fidelity of the translation, the authenticity of the translator’s signature, the authenticity of the signature on the document.
Registers notifications.
Represents registration documents.
Makes protests, withdrawal and imposition of a ban on alienation, issuance of extracts.
Enters information into the register.
Accepts documents, applications, measures to protect inherited property, securities and funds in deposit.
Issues documents, duplicates.
Transfers documents of legal entities and individuals to third parties.
The terms “certification” and “certification” in the law on notaries, as well as on the official websites of the federal and regional chambers of notaries, are not used.

From the above, we can conclude that the concepts of “certification” and “certification” are allowed to be used in oral speech. Moreover, from the point of view of vocabulary, the word “certification” is more correct. Despite the fact that some notary offices, when offering their services in advertising, use the expression “certification of documents”. But this is already a matter of stylistic preferences, as well as the literacy of marketers who create advertising content.

As for the legal correctness of the designation of the actions of notaries, it will be more competent to use the terms “certify” and “testify”.

A similar use of terms is applicable to situations when not only making copies of documents, but also their notarized translation is performed.