- Basis of the Retainer
These Terms of Business apply to all services provided to you my client by Pam Deol, a Notary Public and Commissioner for Oaths authorised to practise throughout England and Wales and having an office at Hyefield House, 36 Hagley Road, Halesowen, West Midlands B63 4RH.
- Fees and Disbursements
I charge fees based on the time taken for the whole matter (including making the appointment travelling or waiting time and the time needed to make the record) at the rate of £225.00 per hour. I charge a minimum of £60.00 with the right to vary the rate in respect of work carried out urgently or at weekend at your request, in which case an uplift percentage will apply to charges but not disbursement (expenses incurred on your behalf such as apostille and legalisation fees or courier fees). Please note if you would like a same day service and I am able to provide this, there is an additional expedition fee of £100, excluding VAT.
I also charge out of pocket expenses/disbursements for example, fees payable to the Foreign Office, Foreign Embassies or agents dealing with the legislation of documents or postage or courier charges. I will invoice you for the notarial activity, together with, translation fees, Companies House fees, FCO certification and embassy formalities (if applicable). I would ask you to pay for monies on account prior to commencing work to cover these amounts.
My bills should be paid on presentation and documents will not be released until they have been paid. If instructions are terminated for any reason, a reasonable charge will be made for all work carried out to date.
Payment can be made by cash, online transfer (bank account details available upon request), credit card/debit card.
In some instances, a fixed fee may be agreed with you but the right is reserved to renegotiate the fee or charge at my hourly rate if matters develop unforeseen complications such as more documents, more complex documents or more persons involved in the transaction.
Expenses Incurred On Your Behalf
You are responsible for all expenses incurred on your behalf, such as fees due to the Foreign and Commonwealth office (FCO) or foreign embassies, courier’s fees, legalisation agent’s fees, Companies House charges, special postage charges or search fees in registries where needed.
- Notarisation & identification
3.1. A primary function of a notary is to identify the client. In the case of individuals, I require proof of residential address and will, therefore, request personal documentation that can include:-
- a passport
- national identity card
- photocard driving licence
- marriage certificate or divorce judgment
- and/or a recent gas, electricity or other bill or bank statement (for proof of address)
3.2. I will also need to establish that your company or organisation exists and that the signatory has authority to represent it. In the case of companies or organisations based in the United Kingdom, I will generally conduct my own checks. In some cases (particularly for companies or organisations established overseas) I may ask you to produce certain documents. These might include a certificate of incorporation, good standing certificate and other similar evidence. If I have to certify the signatory’s authority to represent a company or organisation, additional documentation will be requested, for example:-
- constitutional documents (e.g. memorandum and articles of association)
- a power of attorney
- board resolutions
- authorised signatory book (in the case of banks) and/or
- extract from a commercial register (generally for foreign companies)
I will be happy to advise exactly what will be required in any particular case.
- Verification of Facts
Part of the Notary’s role is to check the facts in the documents he/she notarises for his/her clients and this sometimes involved obtaining evidence or proof from sources independent of the client. With regard to this I need the Client’s full co-operation. If I need to add disclaimers to the document to make it clear that there are facts which I have not been able to verify, the document may become useless or of less benefit to the Client and I will not accept liability if this is the case.
- Ceasing to Act
In some circumstances, I may consider that I ought to stop acting for a Client. For example, if the Client cannot give clear or proper instructions on how I am to proceed, I may decide to stop acting with good reason, for example, if the matter on which I am instructed involves fraud or violence, or if the Client does not pay a bill.
6.1. I owe a duty of confidentiality to my clients. You agree, however, that I may, when required by our auditors, insurers or advisers, provide details to them of any engagement, and that I may also disclose confidential information if required to do so by law or regulation.
6.2. Sometimes I ask sub-contractors or other third parties to do translating, typing, photocopying or other support services. I will have a confidentiality agreement with them but, if you do not want us to use them, just tell me in advance.
6.3. In accordance with my professional rules, a copy of a notarial act or of the record of a notarial act retained by me may, upon payment of a reasonable fee, be issued upon the application in writing of any person or authority having a proper interest in the act.
- Data Protection
I am required by law to retain details of the transaction including a copy of the Notarial Act and copies of your personal identification documents in some circumstances indefinitely. It is a term of our agreement that you agree to us retaining all documentation for all Notarial Acts indefinitely. You have been provided with a copy of our Privacy Notice in relation to retention of personal and special category personal data, agreement to this forms part of the contractual agreement between us and does not therefore require your further specific consent. I am also Data Protection Officer of my practice.
- Consumer Rights
Where you act a consumer, you have certain legal rights to cancel, where a contract is classed as an “off-premises” contract. Where this is the case, you will be required to waive these rights by requesting early provision of services in writing prior to any services being provided. Where applicable, our Consumer Right Policy shall form part of the contractual agreement between us.
This includes (non-exhaustively) all checking or work upon any document presented by you, taking instructions either from you or written by you or others, consideration, drafting, liaising with foreign legal advisers, completion of part prepared documents, binding and or sealing of any document and time taken in ensuring compliance with requirements of any foreign jurisdiction.
- Professional Advice
My responsibility is to the integrity of the Notarial Act performed by me on your behalf. My obligation to you is confined to ensuring you understand the nature and purpose of the content of the document concerned and that you intend to be bound by it. It is not my responsibility to provide legal advice as to the effect of the document, in relation to this, you must place reliance upon such advice as may be provided by your own professional advisers either here or in the foreign jurisdiction concerned.
- Integrity of the Act
In order to discharge my obligation, I have to be satisfied as to your identity, your capacity, understanding and intent legally to perform it and, in some circumstances I shall have to insist upon there being a translation. While I shall endeavour to ensure your document in its form and content is fit to achieve its purpose, I am not liable to you if it does not. I must also be satisfied the act is your voluntary act, that there is no fraud, violence or duress involved.
If I am not satisfied as to any of the matters referred to in this paragraph, I am obliged to refuse to complete the matter.
- Anti-money Laundering, Proceeds of Crime & Antiterrorism Legislation
I am required by law to ensure that I assess each transaction in relation to the possibility of money laundering, proceeds of crime and terrorism. To enable me to do this I will need to check your identity, address, the source of funds, their destination and the nature of the transaction. I am not able to simply “certify your signature” on a document. This legislation requires notaries to report suspicious transactions to law enforcement agencies. You agree to provide all information I may ask you to supply.
I am not responsible for any delay or loss clients may suffer as a result of the Notary complying with such anti-money laundering procedures and regulations.
The Notary is entitled to refuse to act (or issue a restricted certification) if he/she has any concerns.
- Foreign & Commonwealth Office and/or Consular Legalisation
Some countries require a document to be “legalised”. This is the process by which the relevant state agency confirms that my seal and signature are those of an appropriately qualified and authorised Notary Public for England and Wales. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office attach an apostille to the document. Sometimes the document then has to go to the London Embassy of the country to where the document will be sent. The Embassy will then attach its own certificate to the document. The FCO and Embassies charge fees for their involvement and you are responsible for payment of such fees. Your lawyer may advise you of the need for legalisation. If not, you should ask him or her about it. I am able to obtain the necessary legalisation, providing you have provided the funds to enable me to do so, and I shall discuss with you the timescale and whether I should use legalisation agents or couriers if speed is required. However, you may arrange legalisation yourself if you wish.
- Record Keeping
All notaries are required to maintain a record of transactions completed by them. I shall also retain a copy of any notarised document and evidence of your identity in our protocol.
I store without charge to the Client a copy of any notarial act in the “public” form permanently and of every notarial act in a “private” form for 12 years. I do not always keep a full copy of a Client’s own documents but I reserve the right to do so.
- Relevant Law
The relevant law governing my contract with you is the law of England and Wales; any dispute shall be decided by the courts of England and Wales.
- Professional indemnity, limitations on liability
a) At your request I will dispatch documents on your behalf. Such documents are at your risk after I have delivered them to the postal service or carrier.
b) Embassies and government departments may in their discretion, delay or refuse to deal with your documentation. Occasionally they may damage your documentation. I am not responsible for the action (or inaction or delay) of these organisations.
c) I have in place professional indemnity and fidelity insurance cover, to comply with the Faculty Office minimum insurance coverage levels for any notarial acts performed by me in England and Wales. This level of insurance coverage is the maximum liability of my notary practice to the client in connection with any liability, and in no circumstances will the liability exceed £1,000,000.
d) The contract you make is with Pam Deol Notary Public. You agree to only pursue Pam Deol for any claim made in connection with her notarial services and you will not bring any claims against her personally.
e) The amount of any liability is to be reduced so far as may be appropriate to take account of the degree of responsibility of any other professional or other advisors whom the client has consulted in relation to the matter as if the firm has successfully claimed contribution from them under the Civil Liability (Contribution) Act 1978 taking no regard for any limitation agreed between the client and such advisor, and they had the resources to meet the same, provided that the firm shall not be obliged to make or pursue any such claim for contribution.
f) In any event, no liability whatsoever will be accepted where such liability either arises from:
i) any instructions or information given by the client, or by any third party being incomplete, inaccurate or incorrect;
ii) where such liability is for any indirect, economic or consequential loss or damage, costs, expenses or other claims for consequential compensation whatsoever or howsoever caused which arise out of or in connection with the notarial services provided or for loss of profit, loss of business, loss of data, depletion of goodwill or loss occurring in the normal course of business or otherwise;
iii) any cause beyond our reasonable control including industrial action, act of God, war, civil commotion or unrest, loss of recognition of a country’s status or removal or closing down of a diplomatic mission or consular representation in London, terrorism (or threat of), theft, malicious damage, accident, failure or breakdown of machinery, systems, computers, extreme weather conditions, power failure or failure of telecommunications.
g) A Notary’s first duty is to the transaction as a whole. Unless otherwise agreed in writing, a Notary’s responsibility is limited to the notarial formalities and does not extend to advice on or drafting of documentation, or in relation to substantive legal input on the matter under consideration. The Notary’s capacity is in connection with the authentication of those signing documents or in respect of the confirmation of certain statements of fact or genuineness of copy documentation. These limitations will apply notwithstanding any express or implied term of business or any collateral agreement or warranty, whether express or implied.
- Complaints Procedure
a) If you are dissatisfied with the service provided, please raise this with the Notary/myself in the first instance.
b) If you remain dissatisfied, please contact The Notaries Society of England and Wales, who have a complaints procedure 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:
Secretary of The Notaries Society
Old Church Chambers
23 Sandhills Road
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.
c) Finally, even if you have your complaint under the Notaries Society Approved Complaints Procedure, you may at the end of that procedure, or after a period of 8 weeks from the date you first notified the Notary that you were dissatisfied, make your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman, if you are not happy with the result:
d) If you decide to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman, you must refer your matter to the Legal Ombudsman within 6 months from the conclusion of the complaint process.
e) 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 for clarification on this.