Five facts about notaries public you didn’t know

A notary public prepares and certifies documents for use abroad, for example for individuals engaged in overseas transactions or for businesses involved in international trade.

Despite being the oldest arm of the legal profession, the role and purpose of notaries isn’t well known. However, notarial work is steeped in history.

  1. Notaries public date back to ancient Roman law (over 2,000 years ago!).
  2. In Roman law, the role of a notary was very different to that of a notary public today. Originally, notaries took notes during legal proceedings.
  3. The Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury regulates notaries, ensuring the profession meets a set standard of competence and quality.
  4. Notaries have their own personal seal. This is used to verify the legitimacy of documents for use overseas.
  5. Around 800 notaries practise in England and Wales. Notaries public may solely undertake notarial work, or they may combine it with their role as a solicitor or barrister – our notary public Will Armstrong also works within our personal injury team.

For more information on notarial services, please contact Will Armstrong by emailing will.armstrong@emsleys.co.uk or calling 0113 232 1030.

Will Armstrong

Written by

Will Armstrong

Notary Public and Personal Injury

Will is a solicitor with over 8 years’ experience. He works within our Personal Injury team, specialising in claims for accidents on the highway. Will has also recently qualified as a Notary Public and can validate documents for international transactions.

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