Public Notary Solicitors

Should you require the services of a notary in North Yorkshire, go to the Notaries Society website to find a local notary.  A Notary can usually assist with various services such as:

  • Powers of Attorney and documents for use in other countries
  • Certificate of documents
  • Administering of oaths, affidavits and statutory declarations
  • Certifying copies of academic qualifications, passports and other documents
  • Attesting Spanish wills

Below, you will find information that will prove helpful before you meet a Notary.

When do I need a Notary?

Generally, when you sign a document in England that is to be used in a foreign country.

What is the role of a Notary?

The role of the notary public is to witness documents for individuals and businesses, usually for those that need to be used abroad. Authentication from a notary is by the notary’s seal of office and signature. Authentication is sufficient in many foreign legal jurisdictions to verify to the relevant authorities that the document will be accepted by lawyers, government officers and courts in the country concerned and so assisting the individual or company carrying out their legal business in the overseas country.

Do I need a Notary or a Solicitor?

Legal documents which are signed in this country but are to be used abroad are usually required to be “notarised”. If the document which you are being asked to sign is required to be “notarised” then this can only be done by a notary public.

However, if the persons you are dealing with in the foreign country indicate that you may sign the document before a solicitor, you do not usually need a notary. Signing before a solicitor involves less work by the lawyer, and incurs a lesser fee. 

What is notarisation?

A document is notarised by the Notary affixing his seal of office, then signing and dating either a certificate attached or endorsed on the document or sealing and signing the document itself.

A Notary is a qualified lawyer; being a notary is a separate and distinct professional qualification to that of a solicitor. A Notary Public in England has many of the same responsibilities as notaries in European countries.

The international duty of a Notary involves a high standard of care. This is not only towards you, the client, but also to others abroad who may rely on the document.

What is legalisation?

Legalisation by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office by apostille or by the consulate at the embassy of the overseas country can be arranged by the Notary. Legalisation is a different and separate process from notarisation.

Next Steps

Contact the Notaries Society to find a local Notary.  Your local Notary will be happy to give guidance and assistance about the documents you are wishing to have notarised.  When a date and time is set for an appointment, they we will advise you what ID documents are required.

Attending an Appointment

To prove your identity you will need to provide one of the following:

  • A passport
  • A photo driving licence
  • A national identity card
  • An armed forces pass

To prove your current residence, you must present one of the following documents not more than 3 months old:

  • A bank or building society statement
  • A utility bill

OR one of the following documents not more than 12 months old:

  • A formal Notice of Coding or Assessment from HMRC (Inland Revenue)
  • A council tax demand

For businesses, additional documentation will need to be provided. We will make an online search at Companies House and advise you on what additional documentation may be required.

How long will I be with the Notary?

For one document you should allow 40 minutes, for two to four documents you should allow up to an hour.

How do I prepare for my meeting with the Notary?

  • read the documents you have been sent and make sure you understand what they say,
  • satisfy yourself that they meet your requirements
  • ensure that they are complete, with no blank spaces; the notary will insert his own name, and address details.

Please do not “jump the gun” by signing the document in advance of your appointment. The Notary should normally witness your signature.  He also needs to be satisfied that you understand the document, particularly any documents that are not in English.

What does the Notary do at my appointment?

The Notary will check your identity and address, proved by two separate documents. The Notary will take copies of them and they will be saved electronically. The Notary will attend to authenticating or certifying your document; this will always require the Notary to sign and attach their seal of office and date the document.

When I see the Notary what must I bring?

  • the documents to be notarised,
  • any particular instructions you have been given as to the form of notarisation or requirements,
  • two ID documents separately proving full name and current residential address 

How much will it cost?

Fees start from £85 + VAT and expenses. A fixed fee can usually be given in advance if the documents have already been prepared, are ready for signature and are emailed to our office.

What business does a Notary get involved with?

There are many types of documents that are required to be notarised. Notarising documents frequently used in foreign countries include:

  • buying or selling residential property, timeshares and companies
  • assisting with overseas “probate” of UK nationals who have owned property abroad and have died
  • powers of attorney given by individuals and companies
  • passports and identification documents
  • birth, marriage, divorce and adoption certificates
  • university degrees and professional qualifications
  • documents concerning a company’s registration at Companies House, its current directors and its continuous existence since the formation
  • company contracts, trading and other documents
  • immigration and emigration documents

Individuals, companies, charities and institutions eg universities and schools may need to have documents notarised.

What will the Notary give me?

The Notary will provide the original document, which you have signed before him/her, now notarised. The Notary will also provide you with a copy for your own records and a VAT invoice.

Documents will be released after payment of the notary fee account in full has been made.

 

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