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Insights // 14 October 2019

What is a Notary Public? Notarial and Legalisation Services Explained

Notary public and partner at Blandy & Blandy LLP, David Few, explains the role of a notary public and notarial and legalisation Services for businesses and private individuals.

What is the role of a notary public?

Notaries are primarily concerned with providing authentication and a secure recording of any transaction, document or event for use abroad including authenticating company and business documents and transactions or providing certificates as to the status of a company or the identity of its directors.

According to the Notaries Society, “A Notary is a qualified lawyer - a member of the third and oldest branch of the legal profession in England and Wales. Notaries are appointed by the Court of Faculties of the Archbishop of Canterbury and are subject to regulation by the Master of the Faculties. The rules which affect Notaries are very similar to the rules which affect Solicitors. They must be fully insured and maintain fidelity cover for the protection of their clients and the public. They must keep clients' money separately from their own and comply with stringent practice rules and rules relating to conduct and discipline. Notaries have to renew their practising certificates every year and can only do so if they have complied with the rules”.

Notaries take instructions from clients and examine a wide range of documents, witnessing these or obtaining certified copies of these, often at short notice. The notaries’ role, which bears many similarities to the one undertaken in Roman times, is to check for fraud and that the client understands the document(s) they are signing. As such, it is important that notarial services are only provided by an experienced Notary Public.

Friar Street Notaries

Practising at Blandy & Blandy LLP’s offices, Friar Street Notaries is the largest and arguably most experienced group of notaries based in Reading and the surrounding area.

We advise organisations ranging from well-known multinational businesses to large and fast growing private companies, regularly visiting their headquarters or offices in the Thames Valley. Ranging from those located centrally – in landmark premises like Thames Tower – to those situated on business parks like Green Park, Thames Valley Park and Winnersh Triangle and further afield in the Thames Valley.

Clients are equally as welcome at our town centre offices, just a few minutes’ walk from Reading Station, where we also advise companies, local institutions and private individuals on notarial matters.”

For further information, please email notarialenquiries@blandy.co.uk or call 0118 951 6800.

This article is intended for the use of clients and other interested parties. The information contained in it is believed to be correct at the date of publication, but it is necessarily of a brief and general nature and should not be relied upon as a substitute for specific professional advice.

David Few

David Few

Partner, Corporate & Commercial Law & Notary Public

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