Terms of Business

In general, these will be agreed in advance of any meeting. They will be estimated according to the complexity and value of the matter in question. If at the appointment the matter proves to be more complicated or there are more documents or people involved than you indicated or Legalisation is required, I reserve the right to renegotiate the fee at a given rate per hour. All prices quoted are subject to VAT.

You are responsible for all the payments I make on your behalf. Typical examples are Legalisation fees paid to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and/or a Consulate, Legalisation agents’ fees, Companies Registry fees, couriers’ fees and special postage charges. However I shall not incur these expenses without first obtaining your consent to do so.

My charges are normally payable on the signing of the document or on the receipt of the notarised document. If I render a bill in respect of the work, payment will be due when you receive the bill.

Time charge
Where my fees are charged on a time basis, this will include all work undertaken on your matter from start to finish including preliminary details and advice, preparation, attendances, drafting, phone calls, correspondence including emails, faxes, copying documents and the completion of my register and protocol. Letters, emails and phone calls are charged at a minimum of six minute units or otherwise at the time taken.

Includes preliminary discussions about practicalities, checking and dealing with any documents presented by you, any instructions accompanying the documents, consideration and drafting of documents before, during or after attendances, attending to any amendments or completing any blanks in the documents, binding the documents securely and dealing with any special requirements or formalities of the foreign country.

Your own professional advisers:
It is not my responsibility to give you legal advice concerning the document. My role is to be satisfied that you understand the content of the document and that you intend to be bound by it. You are advised to seek first the advice of your own independent legal or other competent professional adviser who practises in, or is skilled in the law of the jurisdiction to which the document will be sent.

My responsibilities
I have to be satisfied as to your identity, your legal capacity, your authority and your understanding and approval. In certain instances, I may insist on a translation of documents in foreign languages. I shall do my best to ensure that the document – in the manner of its execution, its form and substance – will achieve its purpose but this cannot be guaranteed, although I would where practicable seek advice from your lawyer (if any) in the receiving jurisdiction. I must be satisfied that the execution of any document is your voluntary act and that no fraud, violence or duress are involved and that any stipulated formalities either under English or foreign law are observed. If I am not satisfied about any one of those things I can refuse to undertake the matter.

Foreign & Commonwealth office and/or consular legalisation
Some countries require a document to be legalised. This is a process of authentication of my signature and status as a notary or of an earlier legalisation. Sometimes, legalisation by the UK Foreign office is enough.  In such cases, this legalisation is known as ‘the Apostille’.  Sometimes, after Legalisation by the UK Foreign Office, the document also requires legalisation by the consulate of the receiving jurisdiction.  In that case, they are authenticating the prior legalisation. The lawyer (if any) in the receiving jurisdiction will probably advise you of the need for legalisation. If not, you should ask him about it. I can advise whether legalisation might be required but, in the end, it is for the local jurisdiction to decide.  I can arrange legalisations and, in these instances, I would discuss fees and likely time-scale. However you can deal with legalisation yourself if you wish.

Register & protocol
At the end of the matter, I keep a record of my notarial act and of the information supporting my certification.

My liability
I carry professional indemnity liability cover of £1,000,000. This means that I limit the level of my liability to you to £1,000,000, unless you are injured or die as a result of my negligence, in which case my liability is without limit.

The relevant law
The law which governs my contract with you is the law of England and Wales and it is agreed that any dispute relating to my services shall be resolved by the English courts.