Terms of Engagement

My client   My notarial services are provided to you, the person appearing before me, on these terms of engagement. These terms of engagement shall also apply to any person, company or other entity that you represent for the purpose of the notarial services.  Advice given, if any, is provided for your benefit and solely for the purpose of the instructions to which it relates.

Identity   Verifying the identity of clients and any person, company or other entity whom they represent is central to the principles of notarial work and is required by law.  Following the guidelines above in producing evidence of identity is essential to enable me to assist you.

Fees and disbursements   My fee for a straightforward notarisation within my office is £90 plus VAT. Other work is priced individually. Once I have taken your instructions, if the scope of work exceeds that of a basic notarial act I will provide a close estimate of the fee, based on your requirements. My fee reflects the expertise of a lawyer experienced in international transactions.

Billing and payment   I will present an invoice for the agreed fee on completion of the appointment and unless otherwise agreed require payment prior to release of documents. Payment may be made by cheque, bank transfer or cash. I reserve the right to lien all documents and to refrain from incurring disbursements pending settlement of the account. Statutory rights under late payment legislation to claim interest and debt recovery costs will be exercised if necessary. I keep records of documents I authenticate. Copies of my records can be provided to the parties to the transaction for a fee of £30 plus VAT per document.

If you terminate your instructions, I may make a charge for work carried out and will charge for any disbursements or expenses incurred on your behalf.

Confidentiality, security and records  Notaries are under professional and legal obligations to keep client affairs confidential unless instructed to make disclosure or compelled to disclose information by law.  The professional body regulating notarial practice also has rights of inspection.

Information held about you, including personal information such as your name, address and passport details, will be held in accordance with applicable data protection legislation.  This information will be used to provide notarial services to you.  Your name and contact details may be used to contact you about notarial services that may be of interest to you, unless you inform me that you do not wish to receive such information.

Unless instructed to the contrary, I may use ordinary e-mail to communicate with you and to exchange documents.  You should inform me of any specific security requirements. Records of notarial acts are retained as required by notarial practice regulations.

Liability   Nothing in these terms of engagement will exclude or limit any liability that I may have to you in respect of any loss caused by fraud, fraudulent misrepresentation or reckless disregard of professional obligations or in any other situation where the law prohibits me from excluding or limiting my liability to you, including in respect of any death or personal injury resulting from my negligence.

In all other cases, I limit my liability for any claim made in respect of negligence and/or breach of contract (including in respect of any omission) or in any other way arising from each notarial matter to a maximum of £1 million.

The extent to which any loss or damage will be recoverable by you will also be limited so as to be in proportion to my contribution to the overall fault for such loss and damage, taking into account any contributory negligence by you and any negligence by your other advisers and/or any third party responsible to you and/or liable in respect of such loss or damage.  No liability whatsoever will arise where your loss arises from inaccurate or incomplete instructions or information given by you or by any third party on your behalf.  No liability whatsoever will arise in relation to any indirect, economic or consequential loss, including but not limited to loss of profit or business that you may incur.

Searches of the Register of Companies and at other public bodies will be carried out using appropriate means including on-line searches.  No liability whatsoever will arise from any inaccuracy in the information so received.

Notarial work often involves sending documents by Document Exchange (DX), Royal Mail and courier. I cannot be held liable for losses or delay in using such services.

Service Quality   I aim to provide an exemplary service to clients.  If you have any concerns, please let me know right away so that, if possible, any problem can be rectified.

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

If I am unable to resolve the matter you may then complain to the Notaries Society of which I am a member, who have a Complaints Procedure that 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
Telephone: 01604 758908
Email:    secretary@thenotariessociety.org.uk

If you have any difficulty in making a complaint in writing please do not hesitate to call the Notaries Society or 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 eight weeks 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
Baskerville House, Centenary Square, Broad Street, Birmingham B1 2ND
Tel: 0300 555 0333
Email:    enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk

If you decide to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman you must refer your matter to the Legal Ombudsman within six months from the conclusion of the complaint process.

Law and Disputes   This retainer and any non-contractual obligations arising out of or in connection with it, are governed by English law and the English courts shall have exclusive jurisdiction for the determination of any dispute arising out of or in connection with this Agreement (including (without limitation) in relation to any non-contractual obligations).

My practice as a notary public is separate from my practice as a solicitor with Keates Ferris and is also separate from Muckle LLP, in whose office my office is situated.

Jonathan Kemp, Notary Public