What is the procedure for getting a 'certified copy' of my passport for the bank?
September 29, 2008 7:53 AM   Subscribe

What is the procedure for getting a 'certified copy' of my passport for proof of identity for the bank?

In the midst of a worldwide financial meltdown, I decided that this would be a good time to invest in the stock market!

Having applied to open a Stocks & Shares ISA (I'm in the UK) with Legal & General, they've asked me for a couple of forms of identification, including my passport - this can be a 'certified copy', i.e. a copy which has been confirmed by a trusted authority as being valid.

They sent a list of officials who are able to certify the copy:
- UK lawyer
- Bank official
- Authorised financial intermediary
- Mortgage broker
- Accountant
- Commisioner of oaths
- Councillor: Local or County
- Justice of the Peace, Magistrate, or Judge
- Commisioner Officer of the Armed Services (Active)
- Police officer

My problem is: I have no idea how to actually go about getting one of these officials to certify my copy. I don't have a lawyer, or an accountant, or any other kind of financial adviser... and I don't feel like I can just flounce into a bank/police station/whatever and ask them to check my identification.

I've dealt with Legal & General entirely online so far, and if they have public-accessible branches I haven't been able to find out about them so far, so it doesn't seem like I can just bring the original passport in, and I'm not willing to send it in the mail.

So what do I do? What's the procedure?
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
What is a "commissioner of oaths"? From googling, it sounds very similar to a Notary Public here in the US, which is basically a profession that exists to witness things and put their official stamp on it. I'd look up one of those - they'll probably make you a photocopy and put their stamp in it, which is what the bank is looking for (if it's anything like here). That service runs anywhere from $10-30 here.
posted by chundo at 8:11 AM on September 29, 2008

Most banks in the US have a Notary Public (or 2) on staff, and they do things like chundo noted. Many banks here will only offer notary services for their customers, so if you have a checking account at a UK bank, I would go into one of their branches and explain the situation. If you don't, I'd just try any large bank near you.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:34 AM on September 29, 2008

I don't feel like I can just flounce into a bank/police station/whatever and ask them to check my identification.

Actually, why not just call up any lawyer in your area and make an appointment? The process of certification doesn't take long, and shouldn't cost much.
posted by hellopanda at 8:42 AM on September 29, 2008

This is pretty commom thing to do, a Commisioner of oaths will look at your original passport, look at the copy, and put their stamp on it. They'll charge you a fee which you'll feel is disproportionate to the amount of work involved.

You'll find loads in the yellow pages.

The police may do the same thing for less or free but a lot of the time they prefer if you are known to them(in a good way)

In fact when you applied for your passport did you not have to get the photo's certified?
posted by MarvinJ at 8:56 AM on September 29, 2008

MarvinJ - I was under 16 when I got this passport, so in answer to your question I can only offer that 'my Mum probably dunnit'.
posted by Kirn at 9:04 AM on September 29, 2008

P.S. Oops. Since it posted my name there I should confirm that I am the original poster... there goes the anonymous posting, oh well.
posted by Kirn at 9:07 AM on September 29, 2008

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