Notaries

How to read a notarial document

At the top of a notarial document the notary indicates, as the title, the name of the executing parties and the class of the legal act or acts it contains.

The text of the notarial document comprises 3 parts:

Introduction:

  • Place and date of issue of the instrument.
  • Name of the notary.
  • Name, nationality, marital status and profession or occupation of the parties appearing, followed by an indication of whether they act in their own right.
  • The identity documents of the persons appearing and any other documents that the notary might deem appropriate.
  • The circumstance that a person is appearing as the representative of another, indicating the document authorising this.
  • The circumstance of the involvement of an interpreter, in the event that any of those appearing is not familiar with the language in which the instrument is drawn up.
  • An indication of the involvement of a person accompanying the individual appearing or requested by the notary in the event that the person in question is illiterate, blind, cannot or does not know how to sign, or where there is any other circumstance impeding access to the content of the document or communication with the notary, notwithstanding the possibility of a fingerprint being used.
  • Confirmation by the notary as to the capacity, freedom and comprehension of those appearing as regards their obligations.
  • Indication of whether the instrument has been drawn up on the basis of a draft text or not.

Body:

  • Declaration of the will of the executing parties, set out in a draft text authorised by a lawyer, and inserted literally.
  • Confirmation in accreditation of representation, where this needs to be included.
  • Any documents that those appearing might wish to annex.
  • Any documents required by legal provision.
  • In the case of powers of attorney, a literal transcription of the legal standards cited, without indicating the content, and with a reference to acts of disposal or the granting of powers.
  • Any other documents that the notary might deem appropriate.

Conclusion:

  • Confirmation that the notary or those appearing have read the authentic instrument, as decided by the latter.
  • Ratification, modification or indications made by those appearing, which will also be read out.
  • Confirmation of the handover of assets as stipulated in the legal act.
  • The literal transcription of legal standards, if they are mentioned in the body of the instrument without indicating the content and refer to acts of disposal or granting of powers.
  • Transcription of any document required and that might have been omitted from the instrument.
  • The involvement of persons acting in the stead of others, by mandate, substitution or legal demand; these annotations may be marginal.
  • Any omissions that in the judgment of the notary must be rectified in order to register the legal acts forming the object of the document and that those appearing have not noted.
  • The correction of any error or omission noted in the instrument.
  • Confirmation of the serial number of the first and last sheets of the authentic instrument.
  • Signature by those appearing and by the notary, indicating the date when each of the executing parties signed, and when the process of signing the instrument ended.
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