What is a civil law notary ?
A civil law notary’s task is to advise persons who wish to conclude agreements in areas as diverse as real estate, family or business matters. A civil law notary informs his or her clients about their rights and duties, and about the consequences – legal, financial and tax-related – of their commitment. The civil law notary listens to his clients’ needs and advises them on all these areas.
The civil law notary is a public officer, appointed by the King, who receives a delegation of power from the State. The civil law notary’s remit covers three main areas of law: real estate law (purchase and sale of real estate, mortgage loans, etc.) family law (marriage settlements, inheritances, donations,, divorces, etc.) and business law (incorporation of companies, mergers, etc.).
The civil law notary often intervenes in these three areas because the law lays down that certain types of agreements should be established in a special written form. Such written documents are called “authentic deeds”. The civil law notary and his or her staff members make inquiries among the different administrations to obtain all necessary information before establishing the deed and make sure that the deed cannot be challenged, either regarding its content or its form. They also ensure the follow-up of the deed, such as registration in the public registers and payment of taxes.
The civil law notary’s profession is a profession with a significant human dimension. The notary intervenes at key times in a person’s life; he has to listen to his clients and understand their needs and wishes. The civil law notary is a mediator.