Commissioner of Oaths for Québec


Michel Roberge, Commissioner of Oaths for Québec #229429

Can be reached at 514-830-3467

Role :
Some legislation requires a person to be sworn before signing a document or testifying. This formality makes the document or testimony more official or credible, all the more so as a person who knowingly states false or misleading information under oath is liable to charges of perjury under the Criminal Code This hyperlink will open in a new window..

In Québec, Commissioners for Oaths are appointed by the Minister of Justice for a renewable period of three years. Their role is to administer oaths to individuals in the cases where an oath is required or permitted by law.

Powers and restrictions :
A Commissioner for Oaths may:

  • administer oaths in Québec (and outside of Québec, if authorized) for a procedure or a document intended for Québec only;
  • require a maximum fee of $5 for each oath.

A Commissioner for Oaths can not:

  • administer oaths of their immediate family members (father, mother, brothers and sisters, spouse, children);
  • certify documents or attest that a copy of a document is in accordance to the original. A Commissioner for Oaths is not appointed to perform such a function. The only power that the law grants him or her is to administer oaths to individuals in the cases where an oath is required or permitted by law. Under these circumstances, he or she may, at most, administer an oath to a person who presents him or her a copy of a document and who declares that it is in accordance to the original document. However, this declaration would not have the effect of giving a true value to this copy, because the depositary of an original document has this power only (for example, the notary for the notarial will, the registrar of civil status for a birth certificate).

Responsibilities

The only responsibility of a Commissioner for Oaths is to administer oaths. He or she is not obliged to verify the content of the declaration. In fact, it is to the person swearing an oath to know the content of the document that he or she sworn in.

On the other hand, Commissioners for Oaths may refuse to administer an oath for some reasons.

Here are the main reasons for a refusal:

  • the document is not prepared in the required form;
  • the document contains glaring errors, vulgar or unreasonable assertions;
  • the person swearing an oath is not able to express his or her will.

IMPORTANT MESSAGE

Coronavirus (COVID-19): For requirements for remote swearing-in, please refer to the following document:

Remote swearing in

Administering oaths

An oath is an important act and is subject to strict rules. Thus, it must at all times be made in the presence of the affiant (e.g.: an oath over the phone is not valid). Besides, a court could decide that an oath is invalid if the Commissioner has committed irregularities in the performance of its duties (e.g.: the Commissioner acted while his or her commission had expired).

  • During the administration of an oath, the Commissioner for Oaths addresses to the affiant as follows: 

"You declare under oath that everything stated in the present document is the truth. Repeat: I declare under oath."

  • Once he or she swore, the affiant must sign the declaration in presence of the Commissioner for Oaths. If the signature appears already in his or her declaration, he or she must sign again.
  • The Commissioner for Oaths indicates the place and date of the swearing in by using the following wording:

"Declared under oath before me
at __________________ (name of the locality)
this_______________________ (date)"

  • He or she then affixes his or her signature and writes, by hand or using a stamp, his or her name, the words "Commissioner for Oaths for Québec" (or, depending on the case, "Commissioner for Oaths for Québec and for outside of Québec ") and his or her commissioner number. Note that a Commissioner for Oaths is not a Justice of Peace and can not use this title. Commissioners for Oaths also can not use initials such as "CA" or "c. a.", which may imply that he or she is a Chartered Accountant. Furthermore, only members of the Chamber of Notaries of Québec may use the title "Notary" or "Notary Public".