Certificate of Origin Authentication & Legalization
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Certificate of Origin Authentication in Canada
A certificate of origin is a document used when exporting products. It certifies that the goods being shipped were wholly obtained, produced, manufactured, or processed in a specific country. A Canadian certificate of origin is used for products being exported outside of Canada.
Almost every country in the world asks for a certificate of origin to clear the import through customs. Local customs authorities then use the certificate to determine what tariffs, if any, need to be paid.
Certificates of origin must be authenticated by Canada and legalized by the country where the product will be exported to before the goods can be accepted.
This guide provides information on the certificate of origin authentication process in Canada, with a step-by-step overview of how you can apply for and prepare your certificate to be accepted by the importing country.
Certificate of Origin Authentication Canada: The Process
Authenticating a certificate of origin is a three-step process:
- Document Preparation and Certification
Let’s go into each of these in more detail:
1- How to prepare a Canadian Certificate of Origin for Authentication at Global Affairs Canada
Before submitting your certificate of origin to Global Affairs Canada for authentication, you must get it certified by your chamber of commerce or, if you’re not a member of a local chamber, by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.
Together with the certificate of origin, you must submit:
- A Letter of Waiver
- Proof of company registration in Canada (Business registration documents)
You can submit your documents via TradeCert’s online portal
Multi-page documents, non-routine documents or background documents must be submitted for review to the Chamber before being submitted through TradeCert, You can do this by emailing your documents to [email protected].
Once you’ve completed this step, check with the final recipient of the certificate of origin to see if they require authentication and legalization. They may ask for an apostille, however, it is not possible to get an apostille in Canada. The alternative is authentication and legalization.
If authentication is needed, the next step is to submit your Canadian certificate of origin to Global Affairs Canada.
2- How to submit a Certificate of Origin for Canada authentication
The next step is authentication at Global Affairs Canada Ottawa. Global Affairs Canada will not authenticate a certificate of origin that:
- Is not an original
- Has a signature that’s not verifiable
- Is glued or laminated
- Is covered by any substance that makes it difficult to stamp.
- Was not issued with the essCert system.
If your certificate of origin was not issued by the essCert system, it must first be notarized by a Canadian notary public before being submitted to Global Affairs Canada.
Certificates of origin issued electronically by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce using the essCert system can be authenticated as is.
To submit your certificate of origin to Global Affairs Canada:
- Fill in the authentication request form
- Add the document you need to be authenticated
- Include a self-addressed stamped envelope or a prepaid courier shipping label
- Send your documents to the Global Affairs Canada address:
Global Affairs Canada
Authentication Services Section (JLAC)
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1A 0G2
In case of any questions, you can also call the Global Affairs Canada authentication services phone number: 1-833-928-1551. In-person visits are not possible at the moment.
3- How to request legalization of a Certificate of Origin and other Trade Documents
The final step is to obtain a legalization stamp from the Embassy or Consulate of the country where you will be exporting your product. You will need separate legalization for every country you’re exporting to. As an example, if your certificate of origin is legalized in Italy, then it’s only valid for Italy.
A number of embassies may ask for supporting documents, some of which may also need to be legalized, to process your request.
While completing Step 2 (Authentication) you have the option to ask Global Affairs Canada to forward your documents to an Embassy or consulate in Ottawa on your behalf, for them to complete the legalization step. To do this:
- Select “Forward to an embassy/consulate” in the “Shipping Details” section of the mail-in form
- Provide the embassy or consulate’s full mailing address
- Include a separate, sealed envelope with documents for the embassy
If you choose this option, get in touch with the Embassy or Consulate before you mail your documents to Global Affairs Canada. Failure to follow Global Affairs Canada’s or the Embassy’s instructions may result in your documents being returned to you without having been legalized.
At Document Authentication Canada, we can help you determine what’s needed for each specific Embassy so that your request will not be turned down and lead to unnecessary delays. We have the expertise to complete the entire authentication and legalization process on your behalf, saving you time and money.
Our simple 4-step process helps you authenticate and legalize your Canadian documents in a fast & easy manner.
Start by calling us at 1-855-700-5840 or requesting a quote online. We’ll get back to you in 1 hour.
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Once you receive a quote and select a time frame that works best for you. We'll provide you with a final price and help you prepare your documents. When your ready ship your documents to our office in Ottawa: 1103-467 Laurier West, Avenue Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1R 5C7.
We recommend that you use a secure, prepaid and tracked courier service for sending your documents.
Have any questions? Feel free to call us at 1-855-700-5840
After receiving your documents we will take care of the rest. We will make sure your documents get authenticated and legalized within your requested time frame.
Want to stay updated throughout the whole process?
Check out Document Authentication Canada's Document Tracking System.
…and that’s it! After completing the document authentication and legalization process, we will send your documents using the shipping method of your choice.
Remember: With Document Authentication Canada you only pay at the end, once your documents have been completely authenticated and legalized.
Common Questions about Certificate of Origin Authentication and Legalization
How to get a certificate of origin online?
You can apply for a Canadian certificate of origin through the Canadian Chamber of Commerce Online Document Certification portal.
Before you can do this, you will have to register for TradeCert by downloading and completing the Letter of Waiver Form.
If you’re the manufacturer of the goods that you’ll be exporting, you will also need to submit a Manufacturer’s Declaration.
Once you’ve registered, you can apply for certificates of origin, and print them right at your desk.
This process is carried out through essCERT so there’s no need to notarize your certificate of origin before submitting it to Global Affairs Canada for authentication.
essCERT is used for preferential and non-preferential electronic certificates of origin (eCOs), EUR.1, ATR.1, EU /EC Certificates of Origin, Arab Certificates, USP Form A as well as relevant supporting documents, such as commercial invoices.
Where can I find a Canada certificate of origin template?
The Canada Border Services Agency provides detailed information on what should be included in a certificate of origin, both preferential and non-preferential. It also offers a list of free trade agreements so you can check the status of the country you’re exporting to.
What is the difference between a preferential certificate of origin and non-preferential certificate of origin?
A preferential certificate of origin applies when the country you’re exporting to has a free trade agreement with Canada. In this case, your client does not have to pay import tariffs on your product. In countries without a free trade agreement, the certificate of origin is non-preferential in which case tariffs will need to be paid by the importer.
Regardless if there is an agreement between countries or not, a certificate of origin remains a must every time.
What does it mean to authenticate a certificate of origin?
Authenticating a certificate or origin means proving its authenticity and preparing it to be recognized abroad. Authentication and legalization prove that the signature and the seal on your document are genuine.
This is required to counter the use of fraudulent certificates of origin. Unfortunately, this is a real issue in international trade. Some certificates are issued by imaginary chambers – in other cases, the names of real chambers are used but the stamp is forged.
Since it’s difficult for countries to prove that a certificate issued abroad is genuine, there is a process that involves both the country where the certificate of origin was issued and the country where the document will be used.
In Canada, this process is called authentication and legalization.
Do you need to notarize a certificate of origin?
There is no need to notarize a certificate of origin (e-co) that was issued electronically by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce using the essCert system. These contain a link for the certificate of origin online verification.
You need to notarize your certificate of origin if it was not obtained through essCert.
How do I legalize a certificate of origin?
Legalization is the final step in a three step process that includes preparing your document (you may need to notarize your certificate of origin – see above), getting it authenticated by Global Affairs Canada, and then legalization at the Embassy of the country where you will submit your certificate.
Each Embassy has specific legalization rules. You can check our Embassy pages to learn more.
How do I get a certificate of origin apostille or attestation?
Different countries use different terms to refer to the authentication and legalization process. Attestation is a term commonly used in the Middle East. Apostille is used by countries that have signed the Hague Apostille Convention. Canada is not a signatory to this Convention so it’s not possible to get an apostille here.
While you may have been asked for attestation or an apostille, the process in Canada is called authentication and legalization and you can find detailed information about each step in the process in the guide above.
It is important to note that, unlike an apostille, authentication and legalization are only valid in one specific country. If you’re exporting a Canadian product to multiple countries, then you must get a legalization from the embassy of each of these countries.
How long does it take to legalize a certificate of origin?
As of April 1, 2022, Global Affairs Canada’s processing time is 48 business days, but this excludes mailing time, and the time it takes for the Embassy or consulate to complete the legalization step. The whole process can easily take from 8 to 10 weeks, more if you do not submit the correct documents.
If you’d prefer to speed up the authentication and legalization part of the process, you can choose to outsource it to experts who can navigate these steps accurately and efficiently. At Document Authentication Canada, we can get a certificate of origin authenticated, legalized and ready for use abroad quickly. Get in touch with us for a free quote!
How much does it cost to authenticate my Canadian certificate or origin?
Quick Canada Certificate of Origin Authentication
This guide has provided all you should know about preparing a certificate of origin, getting it certified, and then authenticated and legalized, ready for use abroad.
Preparing and certifying your certificate of origin, and submitting it to Global Affairs Canada and the Embassy or consulate concerned can be a complicated and lengthy process. There are multiple entities involved, as well as specific procedures to follow.
At Document Authentication Canada, we help facilitate the legalization of certificates of origin and other trade documents. We navigate through the bureaucracy on your behalf so that you avoid unnecessary delays. Get in touch with our expert team at 1-855-700-5840 to request a quote and a free document evaluation.
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