Notarizations and Certifications
Important! Effective January 1, 2015, pursuant to Senate Bill 1050, acknowledgements performed by a notary or other officer must have the following consumer disclosure:
Documents acknowledged before January 1, 2015 that meet current applicable statute will be accepted.
About Proof or Acknowledgment of an Instrument
Existing law provides for the appointment and commission of notaries public by the Secretary of State. Existing law authorizes a notary public to execute a certificate of acknowledgment or proof of execution of an instrument, or a jurat attached to a sworn affidavit. Existing law requires a certificate of acknowledgment, proof of execution, and jurat to be in a specified form.
For more information regarding Acknowledgements, please see Civil Code §1183
Acknowledgements Performed Outside the United States
Pursuant to Civil Code §1183, the proof or acknowledgment of an instrument may be made outside the United States, before any of the following:
- A minister, commissioner, or charge d'affaires of the United States, resident and accredited in the country where the proof or acknowledgment is made
- A consul, vice consul, or consular agent of the United States, resident in the country where the proof or acknowledgment is made
- A judge of a court of record of the country where the proof or acknowledgment is made
- Commissioners appointed by the Governor or Secretary of State for that purpose
- A notary public
If the proof or acknowledgment is made before a notary public, the signature of the notary public shall be proved or acknowledge
- before a judge of a court of record of the country where the proof or acknowledgment is made, or
- by any American diplomatic officer, consul general, consul, vice consul, or consular agent, or
- by an apostille (certification) affixed to the instrument pursuant to the terms of The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents.
California Government Code Section 27293 authorizes the County Clerk to issue a Translation Certificate upon verification the English translation of a foreign language document that must be recorded was performed by a certified or registered court interpreter, or an accredited translator registered with the American Translators Association.
To locate a certified or registered court interpreter or an accredited translator please consult the websites listed below:
When contacting the certified or registered court interpreter, or accredited translator registered with the American Translators Association to have your foreign document translated into English pursuant to California Government Code Section 27293, be sure to ask for the following:
- An original English translation from the original foreign document
- A declaration by the interpreter or translator that the translation is true and accurate, and includes the certification, qualification or registration of the interpreter or translator Translation Declaration Form »
- The signature of the interpreter or translator on the declaration must be acknowledged by a notary public
How to Obtain a Translation Certificate From the County Clerk
Submit the following documents to the County Clerk for issuance of the Translation Certificate:
- The original foreign document
- The original English translation of the foreign document
- Original declaration of the interpreter or translator (with their signature acknowledged by a notary public)
- $10.00 fee per certificate requested
Once the County Clerk has confirmed the document includes all of the required information as listed above, and has verified the translation was performed by a certified or registered court interpreter, or an accredited translator registered with the American Translators Association, they will issue a Translation Certificate and you will forward the above listed documents together with the original Translation Certificate, and appropriate recording fees to the County Recorder.
Please contact our office at (707) 565-3800 with further questions regarding this process.
Sonoma County Clerk
County Clerk-Recorder-Assessor-Registrar of Voters
2300 County Center Drive
Clerk-Recorder accepts payments by cash, checks, credit or debit cards.
Notarization and Certifications Forms
Translation Certificate Application