notary public (sometimes called a notary or a public notary) in New Zealand is a lawyer authorised by the Archbishop of Canterbury in England to officially witness signatures on legal documents, collect sworn statements, administer oaths and certify the authenticity of legal documents, usually for use overseas.

A notary public uses an embossing tool (seal) to verify his or her presence at the time the documents are signed. When visiting a notary public it is important to have formal identification with you, ideally your passport or photo drivers licence.

If the document being notarised refers to a specific identity document, the notary will need to sight that document as well. In some cases, once a document is signed by the notary it will need to be sent to the Department of Internal Affairs in Wellington for authentication. Tony Fortune has been a notary public since 1983 and is a member of the New Zealand Society of Notaries.