Knowledge base articles

Can I use a certified copy instead of the original? Who can certify copies of my documents?

Passports/Travel documents

From 8 May 2017 onwards, when submitting a paper visa application you can provide a certified copy of your passport or certificate of identity in place of your original passport (prior to this date only originals would be accepted).

If providing a certified copy of your passport, Immigration New Zealand only requires a copy of the biodata page, where your photo, name, date of birth and identity details are displayed. We do not require certified copies of each page of your passport.

Immigration staff will still request your original passport if it is required to process your visa application (for example, for identity confirmation or visa label issuing).

To avoid delays, you should provide your original passport with a paper application for a work, student or visitor visa. This will enable us to process your application faster.

If you have applied for your visa online you can scan your original documents and upload these into your online application, however you may still be required to send in your passport to a Visa Application Centre for verification as part of the application process.

If you are required to send in your passport you will be advised of this.

Other documents supporting a visa application

Temporary class visa applications

For the submission of a temporary visa application a photocopy of a document is acceptable.

However, you will be required to provide original or certified copies of documents if specifically requested by an Immigration Officer.

Residence class visa applications 

Certified copies or originals are required for residence applications.

Who can certify a document?

Certified copies must be stamped or endorsed as true copies of the originals by a person authorised by law to take statutory declarations in your country.

Certified copies 

In New Zealand, this person may be a lawyer, notary public, Justice of the Peace, court official or New Zealand Police Officer of a certain rank.

Refer below to where you can locate these officials in New Zealand.

New Zealand Law Society - find a lawyer or organisation

New Zealand Society of Notaries

Royal Federation of the NZ Justices’ Association

Police Officers authorised to take statutory declarations