These are the terms on which Vanner Perez Notaries LLP, a limited liability partnership registered in England under number OC381629 and with registered office at 75 King William Street, London EC4N 7BE (‘we’, ‘us’, the Firm’) will accept instructions to do notarial work (the ‘Terms of Business’), and any related services, for our clients (‘you’, the ‘client’). The nature of notarial work is such that we will in many cases be taking action immediately upon receiving instructions from the client. Therefore, if you have any queries about our terms, please speak to us straight away. Any service offered to you by the Firm is deemed to be subject to the terms of this statement and your instructing us will be considered an acknowledgement of your acceptance of our terms.
1. Our Standards
- We are bound by the professional practice and conduct rules set by the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury (‘the Faculty Office’) and will act in accordance with them. The main set of notarial practice rules applicable to notaries in England and Wales is the Notaries Practice Rules 2019, and the main set of notarial conduct rules is the Notaries (Conduct and Discipline) Rules 2015. Furthermore, notaries are also obliged to comply with the terms of the code of practice approved by the Faculty Office Both sets of rules, the code of practice, as well as other rules applicable to notaries admitted in England and Wales, can be found on the Faculty Office’s website.
- Our aim is to offer a good service to all our clients. The Customer Charter, which may from time to time be available on our website, reflects the values that our staff are encouraged to follow and acts as a series of guidelines which the Firm strives to follow. Any client who is dissatisfied with our services should refer to the complaints procedure described below and also available on our website.
2. Our Services
- We provide notarial services, consisting of the preparation of notarial certifications for use in different jurisdictions, as well as related services, such as the drafting of certain legal documents, translations, legalisation, etc. (“Services”)
- When you instruct us to perform Services, we shall treat you as our client for the purposes of the Notaries Practice Rules 2019 unless you inform us that you are acting on behalf of a third party.
- Your instructions should be express and clear. Early discussion of your requirements with our notaries prior to your meeting or to presenting documents for notarisation is strongly advised. If you have any specific needs, these should be discussed with the notary in advance. Our notaries may be able to advise on typical requirements for certain jurisdictions, but they cannot be expected to know what your specific requirements are. This should normally be confirmed by the party or authority that is requesting the documentation. We will provide our services applying reasonable professional skills and care. We cannot be held responsible for failing to provide services which have not been expressly discussed and agreed with our notaries (e.g. the need for legalisation or translation of specific documents or for specific transactions).
- The provision in advance of copies of the documents to be certified, as well as any available correspondence or instructions provided by the party or authority who is to receive the documentation in the relevant jurisdiction can help avoid problems and may save time and money.
- We will not be liable for any loss or damage arising from our reliance on any information provided by you, or for any inaccuracy, mistake or defect in any document supplied by you or on your behalf, or deriving from your failure to supply any document or relevant information to us.
- Personal attendance to our offices will normally be required, together with the presentation of ID documentation, as detailed below.
- Documents with more than one page will often need to be bound by the notary as part of the notarial certification to ensure pages cannot be added, removed or replaced.
- We will keep copies of documents prepared or certified by us or provided as evidence of identity, authority or other information we require for the provision of our services. Our record-keeping procedures are designed to satisfy the requirements of the applicable Notaries Practice Rules; more information about the way in which the data you provide to enable us to perform our services is set out below in Section 4.
3. Fees, quotes, disbursements and payment
- You agree to pay for the services we provide to you.
- Our fees will be charged on the basis advised by us before the provision of the services. Our fees may be advised by e-mail, telephone or orally in person during your meeting with our notaries or other employees of the Firm, where appropriate. They may also have been set out in a rate card provided to you by us or otherwise agreed between you and the Firm in advance of the provision of the services. In the unlikely event that a service is provided without previous discussion or confirmation of our fees by any of the above methods, our standard rate card, as approved by the Firm from time to time, will apply.
- Our fees may be revised from time to time.
- Advance quotations are given in good faith but subject to seeing the relevant documents and receiving all the necessary information to assess the work involved. We can give a more accurate quotation if you provide us with an accurate description of your documents and requirements, and especially if you can forward copies of the documents in advance, as well as any other relevant documentation, such as correspondence with the receiving authorities or other information which may help us confirm your requirements. All quotations are valid for a maximum of thirty days.
- Variations in the number of documents, number of certifications required, number of signatories, need for legalisation or foreign language requirements not previously advised, urgency, etc., can result in a variation of our fees in respect of any quotation given before we are made aware of those circumstances.
- Disbursements to be incurred on your behalf are charged separately from our fees. Typical disbursements may include, but are not limited to, fees payable to the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, to foreign embassies and consulates and to Chambers of Commerce for the legalisation of documents for use abroad, or fees payable to official registers, including the General Register Office, Companies House, foreign commercial and other registries, etc., for the making of searches or obtaining official documents or copies on your behalf. Information about these procedures and the amount of these disbursements is given in good faith on the basis of the information we have at each particular time. We will strive to provide accurate information but we cannot be responsible for changes and variations in embassy fees and other similar disbursements that we are entitled to recover from our clients in accordance with this paragraph.
- We may ask you to make payments on account of anticipated disbursements and fees. This may depend on the amount of work we need to carry out for you and the amount of the disbursements involved. We may, but are not obliged to, start or continue doing work for you while we are waiting for payment or receipt of clear funds requested to be paid on account.
- Delivery charges, where applicable, will usually be added to our fee, and may carry an administrative charge. Where a specific delivery charge has not been specified in advance, the delivery charge will be £15 for delivery by signed-for post to addresses in the UK, £15 or £25 for international registered post (depending on the destination), £20 for couriers to addresses within the City of London, £30 for couriers to addresses elsewhere in Central London, £70/£80 for international couriers (within/outside Europe).
- As a general rule, our quotes will specify whether charges are inclusive or exclusive of VAT. Where this has not been specified, quotations are considered to be exclusive of VAT, unless otherwise expressly advised by us. Our VAT number is GB154992866.
- All our charges will be specified in pounds sterling and our services must be paid in that currency, unless otherwise agreed by us in writing. We reserve the right to choose to demand payment upfront or to issue an invoice for our services. Our invoices will be due for payment as specified in the invoice. Where no term is specified in an invoice, it will be due on receipt by you. Any queries relating to an invoice must be raised immediately on receipt, or within the term of payment specified in the invoice if not due on receipt. If a payment is late we reserve the right to charge interest on any amount overdue, such interest being at the rate payable on judgement debts, from 30 days after receipt of our invoice to the date of payment.
- When you instruct us, you will be primarily responsible for the payment of our fees and disbursements even if a third party has agreed or is required to pay the whole or part of those fees and disbursements. If such third party delays or fails to pay our fees and/or disbursements, you must pay our fees and/or disbursements and recover the relevant amount from the third party. Your responsibility to us in such circumstances is the same as if you had delayed or failed to pay the relevant amount to us, i.e. you shall remain jointly and severally liable for all fees incurred.
4. Identification requirements and data protection
- The nature of our work, as well as the rules applicable to the notarial profession and other relevant legislation, including provisions for the prevention of money laundering, mean that we need to identify our clients. We also need to ascertain each individual’s capacity to sign any relevant documents, their willingness to do so, their full understanding of the relevant transaction, and their authority when signing on behalf of another person or of a body corporate.
- For the above reasons, our clients will be requested to produce, and must produce, a proof of their ID (usually their original passport, a photocard driving licence or a valid national identity card) and proof of their address (usually in the form of a recent bank statement or utility bill, which is understood to exclude mobile phone bills). We will take copies of the above documents which will be stored, electronically or otherwise, in our records only for the purposes described in the preceding paragraph.
- Additionally, we may require you to provide evidence of any facts or information that we may consider necessary for the provision of the services, including but not limited to, evidence of authority to represent other persons or bodies corporate, evidence of the existence, structure or other details of companies or institutions, etc. Where applicable, we may also need to contact other persons or institutions for the verification of documents, facts or information in relation to the provision of the services. The verification of documents and information is an essential part of our services and we may not be able to issue certain certifications if we are unable to verify the necessary information in respect of the relevant document or transaction.
- We will not disclose to any third party, without your consent, any confidential information regarding you or your affairs, which we receive for the purpose of providing our services. This restriction, however, will not apply to any information which is or becomes generally available to the public other than as a consequence of the breach of our obligation not to disclose it, and will also not apply to any information which is disclosed by us to an independent advisor or other professional where we need to seek advice or specialist assistance on your behalf.
- Despite the above paragraph, we will be entitled to disclose the above-mentioned information to our insurers or legal advisors, or to any third party where the disclosure is required by law, by a court, by a government authority, by a regulatory body, or otherwise where there exists a legal duty or requirement to disclose.
- “Personal Data” means any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person. Your Personal Data will be processed in accordance with the terms contained in our Privacy Notice, which is available on our website. You will also be provided with a copy of the Privacy Notice at the appointment. Where you engage our services on behalf of another person, you agree to pass on a copy of the Privacy Notice to that person and we shall be entitled to assume that you have done so.
- When you instruct us to provide services, you confirm to us that:
- where applicable, you are authorised to share the Personal Data provided to us in connection with the services and that wherever another individual is referred to, you have obtained the explicit and demonstrable consent from all relevant individuals to the inclusion and use of any Personal Data concerning them;
- you will only provide us with the minimum amount of Personal Data required for us to perform our services;
- to the extent this is required for us to perform the services, such Personal Data is accurate, complete and up-to-date; and
- either you provide your explicit consent and warrant that each individual has provided explicit consent for the transfer of Personal Data to foreign organisations in connection with our services as set out at paragraph 18 of our Privacy Notice, or that an alternative legal gateway for such transfer (such as transfer necessary for the conclusion or performance of a contract concluded in the interest of the individual) has been satisfied.
- You shall and you hereby agree to indemnify the Firm and its affiliates and their officers, employees, agents and subcontractors (each an “Indemnified Party”) from and against any claims, losses, demands, actions, liabilities, fines, penalties, reasonable expenses, damages and settlement amounts (including reasonable legal fees and costs) incurred by any Indemnified Party arising out of or in connection with any breach by you of the warranties given by you in the preceding paragraph.
- Where the Firm acts as a data processor in connection with the performance of the Services and the Firm is supplied with Personal Data by the Client in its capacity as a data controller, then subject to any binding agreement between the Firm and the Client to the contrary, the processing of such Personal Data shall take place in accordance with the applicable version of the Firm’s data processing terms, a copy of which is available on our website. It is expressly agreed that the Firm acts as a processor in relation to those Services that include, but are not limited to, translation, postal, courier, legalisation, hosting or other administrative activities ancillary to the Firm’s main business.
5. Appointments and cancellations
- Visits to our offices are arranged by appointment. We cannot guarantee the availability of one of our notaries to see a client who attends our offices without having previously arranged an appointment.
- We are flexible with the change and cancellation of appointments at our offices, but expect our clients to give us reasonable notice of any change or cancellation. We reserve the right to charge an appointment booking fee, particularly in cases where work is required before the appointment itself or where an appointment has to be rebooked following one or more cancellations. In the unlikely event that one of our notaries cannot be available for a scheduled appointment at our offices due to an emergency or to circumstances beyond our control, such as train cancellations, illness or other unexpected events, we will endeavour to contact you as soon as possible to offer you an alternative appointment.
- When one of our notaries is booked to attend a meeting outside our offices, any change of time or cancellation of the meeting by the client must be notified to us at the earliest opportunity. We reserve the right to charge an attendance/cancellation fee for meetings cancelled at short notice, particularly when a meeting is cancelled once our notaries are already on their way to the meeting or have arrived at the place of the meeting. The attendance/cancellation fee charged in such circumstances will be as agreed in advance with the client or, if no express agreement exists, £160+VAT for meetings at addresses within the boundaries of the City of London, or £220+VAT for meetings elsewhere in Central London. A higher attendance/cancellation fee may be applied to cancellation of meetings at short notice outside Central London.
- Where an agreed meeting is delayed and our notary has to wait at the client’s premises (or other place for a meeting), we reserve the right to charge for any waiting time. Waiting time may be charged at any rate agreed in advance or, in the absence of prior agreement, at a rate of £50 per 10 minutes of waiting time.
6. E-mail communications
- Where you contact us by e-mail or provide us with an e-mail address as a way to contact you, we will assume that we may use that e-mail address to send non-encrypted, sensitive or confidential information or documents relating to you and the services we are providing to you or discussing with you. We may also send non-encrypted, sensitive or confidential information to other persons involved, unless you or they have expressly requested us not to do so.
7. Handling complaints
Our aim is to provide a good service to our clients. If you are not satisfied with our services or have any concerns, please contact us to discuss your situation and will do our best to resolve the issue.
The following paragraphs provide contact details and information about what to do if you have a complaint.
1. Our notarial practice is regulated by the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury:
The Faculty Office 1
Telephone 020 7222 5381
2. If you are dissatisfied about the service you have received, please do not hesitate to contact the Firm in the first instance:
Vanner Perez Notaries LLP
75 King William Street
Telephone: 020 3668 6626
3. If we are unable to resolve the matter you may then complain to The Notaries Society, of which all our notaries are members, who have a Complaints Procedure which is approved by the Faculty Office. This procedure is free to use and is designed to provide a quick resolution to any dispute.
4. 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
PO Box 1023
Ipswich IP1 9XB
If you have any difficulty making a complaint in writing, please do not hesitate to contact The Notaries Society/the Faculty Office for assistance.
5. Finally, even if you have your complaint considered under the Complaints Procedure, you may at the end of that procedure or after a period of 8 weeks from the date you first notified us that you were dissatisfied, make your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman, if you are not happy with the result:
PO Box 6806
Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ
Tel: 0300 555 0333
6. If you decide to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman, you must refer your matter to the Legal Ombudsman within one year from the act/omission or within one year from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint.
8. Applicable law and jurisdiction
- The contract between you and us arising from your instructions will be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales.
- The English courts shall have exclusive jurisdiction in the event of a dispute.
- In the event that any provision in these Terms of Business is declared invalid or void by statute or judicial decision, such action shall not invalidate the entire Terms of Business, and all other provisions not declared invalid or void shall remain in full force and effect.