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Daniel Curtis Notary Terms and Conditions

Notary Name: Daniel Joseph Curtis

Principal Address: Shakespeare House, 42 Newmarket Road, Cambridge CB5 8EP Telephone: 01223 461155

E-mail: danielcurtis@hewitsons.com
Hours of Business: 09.00-17.00 Monday to Friday, Other times at discretion

Basis of Charging: Charges will reflect complexity, time, value and urgency

Visiting a Notary Public – Terms & Conditions of Business & Notes for Clients



1. Introduction: These notes are intended to help you understand the work that the Notary Public has to do. I hope that they may save time and expense, both for you and me. They are not exhaustive.

2. Notaries: A Notary is a qualified lawyer appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury and subject to regulation by the Court of Faculties. The rules, which affect Notaries, are very similar to the rules which affect Solicitors. They must be fully insured maintaining cover for the protection of their clients and the public. They must keep clients’ money separately from the business and comply with stringent rules of practice, conduct and discipline. A Notary Public in England has many of the same responsibilities as Notaries in European countries. The role and responsibility of the Notary Public in the United States is very different.

3. Notary Duty: The international duty of a Notary involves a high standard of care. This is not only towards you as the client but also to anyone who may rely on the document and to Governments and officials of other countries. These people are entitled:

    • To assume that a Notary will ensure full compliance with the relevant requirements both here and abroad, and;

    • To rely on the Notary’s register and records.
    Great care is essential at every stage to minimise the risks of errors, omissions, alterations, fraud, forgery, money laundering, the use of false identity. As a Notary, I have to act independently; my overriding duty is ‘to the transaction’.

    4. Signature: The Notary should normally witness your signature. Please do not jump the gun by signing the document in advance of your appointment with me.

      5. Papers to be sent to me in advance: It can save time, expense, and mistakes if, as long before the appointment as possible, you let me have the originals or photocopies of:

        • The documents to be notarised;

        • Any letter or other form of instruction which you have received about what has to be done with the documents;
        • Your evidence of identification.

        6. Identification: I will need you to produce by way of formal identification the original of at least one document from each section below:

          • Your current passport (or, if not available);

          • A current new driving licence (with photo) (or, as a last resort);

          • Recent letter from DWP or State Pension with name and address confirming entitlement.

          and

          • A Utility bill issued in the last 3 months showing your name and address;

          and

          • Any other means of identification requested in your paperwork such as marriage certificate, death certificate, birth certificate.

          • A recent passport sized photograph if none of the above incorporate a good photographic likeness of you.

          7. Proof of names: In a case where the name on the document is different from the name you are currently using, or there has been a variation in the form of spelling of the name over the years, please provide me with, Certificates of Birth, Baptism, Marriage, or a Divorce Decree. If there has been a change of name, then I will need to see a copy of the Deed Poll or Statutory Declaration, which dealt with it.

          8. Chain of evidence: Notarisation is accepted as a
          safeguard under international law. The signature and seal of the Notary
          are recognised as a link in the chain of evidence relating to
          international documents, hence the strict formality.

          9. Examining the evidence: Careful examination by the Notary is required to check whether both the document to be notarised and your personal ID are original, genuine, valid, complete, accurate and unaltered.

          10. Incomplete documents: The Notary has to check that each document to be notarised is fully completed. Unfortunately, many documents produced as ready for signature have blank spaces left in them, not always intentionally! This occurs even when other lawyers or professional advisers have prepared them. If you can help in identifying the information needed to complete any blanks in documents, it will save time when we meet. However, please do not mark the document itself until I have seen it.

          11. Advice on the document: If you bring a document to me for authorisation as a Notary, I will advise you as to the formalities required for completing it. However, I shall not be attempting to advise you about the transaction itself, and you must seek such advice from your own lawyers or persons asking you to have the document signed before me.

          12. Written translations: It is important that you understand what you are signing.
          • Sometimes a professional translation is required.
          • If documentation is in a foreign language, which you do not understand sufficiently, I may have to insist that a translation be obtained. If I have to arrange for a translation, a further fee will be payable.
          • Unless you have a good understanding of the language yourself, an informal or amateur translation is rarely satisfactory.
          • If you arrange for a professional translation, the translator should add his/her name, address, relevant qualification, and a certificate stating: ‘Document X is a true and complete translation of document Y, to which the translation is attached.’
          13. Oral interpreter: If you and I cannot understand each other because of a language difficulty, we may have to make arrangements for a competent interpreter to be available at our interview and this may involve a further fee.

          14. Companies, Partnerships, etc: If a document is to be signed by you on behalf of a company, partnership, charity, club or other incorporated body, there are further requirements on which I may have to insist. Please be prepared for these and telephone with any point or difficulty before attending on the appointment.

          In each case:

          • Evidence of identity of the authorised signatory (as listed above);
          • A copy of the current letterhead (showing the registered office if it is a company);
          • A letter of authority, minute, resolution or Power of Attorney, authorising you to sign the document;
          • In some instances I may have to see a copy of the latest annual accounts; the latest tax assessment; the latest quarterly VAT return.
          Additionally for companies:

          • Certificate of incorporation and of any Change of Name;
          • A copy of the Memorandum and Articles of Association;
          • Detail of directors and secretaries.
          Additionally for partnerships, clubs, etc:

          • The Partnership Agreement; relevant Trust Deed; Charter; or Constitution/Rules.
          I may have to insist on seeing originals of these documents. If you show me photocopies, they have to be certified on behalf of the person holding the originals and who may not be able to release them. The certificate should be in the following form:

          ‘I certify that this (with the following … pages) is a true and complete copy of the
          original document which is currently held by me.
          Full name of signatory:
          Who certifies in his/her capacity as: …………………………………………….
          Signature……………………………………………. Date……………………….’

          15. Notarial charges and expenses:
          • My charges: My current hourly rate is £275.00. My minimum charge for certifying a single document is £130.00. My minimum charge for notarising a Power of Attorney is £150.00. I am not registered for VAT.
          • Once I have seen any document and any instructions sent to you about the document, I may be able to give you a firm indication or an estimate of the likely charges.
          • I will pass on any legalisation fees for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and/or a Foreign Embassy. There might be translator or interpreter fees. Other payments may be required including travelling expenses. Your approval to these will be obtained and you are normally required to make payment in advance of any such amounts.
          • If you require an apostille from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office the
            additional charge for one document is currently £70 (this includes the FCO fee of
            £30, regular postage and agency fees), if multiple apostilles are required or
            urgent/secure postage is required there are additional costs.
          • Basis of charging: If it is a simple matter of witnessing a document, a fixed fee can
            be charged. If there are complications or if I am required to draft a document, or
            obtain legalisation, the charge will be based upon time spent. This may include
             telephone calls made or received, letters sent and received, time spent in
            interview, drafting, and on preparing the necessary entries in my notarial register.

          16. Notarial Records: When I carry out my work for you, I am required to make an entry in a formal register, which is kept by me as a permanent record. I will retain an electronic copy of the notarised documentation with the record. I can be required to deal with queries from, foreign lawyers, Land Registries or Embassies to confirm the fact that you saw me.

          17. Liability: I am covered by the Professional Indemnity Insurance maintained by Hewitsons LLP. Full details of the insurers and territorial coverage of the policy are available on Hewitsons’ website, www.hewitsons.com.

          18. Complaints: My notarial practice is regulated by the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury : The Faculty Office, 1, The Sanctuary, Westminster, London SW1P 3JT, telephone 020 7222 5381, email: Faculty.office@1thesanctuary.com, Website: www.facultyoffice.org.uk

          If you are dissatisfied about the service you have received please do not hesitate to contact me.

          If we are unable to resolve the matter you may then complain to the Notaries Society of which I am a member, who have a Complaints Procedure which is approved by the Faculty Office. This procedure is free to use and is designed to provide a quick resolution to any dispute.

          In that case please write (but do not enclose any original documents) with full details of your complaint to :- The Secretary of The Notaries Society, Old Church Chambers, 23 Sandhill Road, St James, Northampton. NN5 5LH, email: secretary@thenotariessociety.org.uk, telephone: 01604 758908.

          If you have any difficulty in making a complaint in writing, please do not hesitate to call
          the Notaries Society/the Faculty Office for assistance.

          Finally, even if you have your complaint considered under the Notaries Society Approved Complaints Procedure, you may at the end of that procedure, or after a period of 6 months from the date you first notified me that you were dissatisfied, make your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman*, if you are not happy with the result : Legal Ombudsman, P O Box 6806, Wolverhampton. WV1 9WJ, telephone: 0300 555 0333, email : enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk; Website: www.legalombudsman.org.uk
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          you decide to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman you must refer your
          matter to the Legal Ombudsman :-

          Within six months of receiving a final response to your complaint and
          Six years from the date of act/omission; or
          Three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint (only if the act or omission took place more than six years ago).

          * certain kinds of commercial entities are not eligible to make a complaint to the Legal
          Ombudsman – please refer to the Legal Ombudsman Scheme Rules or consult the Faculty Office.

          I hope that these notes are of help to you in understanding what is expected of each of us.


          Daniel Curtis
          Notary Public
          July 2019

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