The curious case of ... the certifiable certification

It must be well over 25 years ago that I first took a photocopy of a certificate of birth, marriage or death, plonked my stamp on it, added a few words in the margin in longhand plus my signature to certify its authenticity and bunged it off to an insurance company for whatever purpose. I estimate that I must have done this on well over a thousand occasions since then - as have thousands of people like me. No insurance company ever used to question the practice.

So when an irate broker came

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