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  • Alice Henning

Everything you need to know about a Commissioner of Oaths

Here is a list of the most common questions regarding a Commissioner of Oaths and what your responsibilities are when providing a Commissioner of Oaths with the documents you need certified.


1. Is it possible for a Commissioner of Oaths to certify a printout of an electronically generated document as a copy of the original?


2. Can Commissioner of Oaths need only view the original document on screen first (and provide the usual certification along the lines of “certified a true copy of the original”) or should one also change the wording of the standard certification in some way?


Yes, it is possible for a Commissioner of Oaths to certify a printout of an electronically generated document as a copy of the original.


This is permitted under section 18 of the ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATIONS AND TRANSACTIONS ACT 25 OF 2002 (ECTA).


In short a reproduced document in soft copy of an electronically generated document can be certified to be a true original of the electronically generated document by a Commissioner of Oaths which is done by following the normal approach used in the past, i.e “certified a true copy of the original”, save that the document in original format is electronic. The wording – “certified a true copy of the original” will stay the same.


In turn a document in soft copy can be scanned and this electronic document can then be certified electronically as a true copy of the original soft copy, by a Commissioner of Oaths provided that he / or she uses an “advanced electronic signature” when certifying and signing the electronic document.


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