Power of Attorney and other Deeds for use in Foreign Countries

Power of Attorney and other Deeds for use in Foreign Countries

Probably the work we are asked to assist with more than anything else is the witnessing of the execution of Deeds of Power of Attorney.

It’s not surprising really. We are in Leeds, our clients are local, and they want to complete transactions abroad.

Realistically, unless you can afford the time and money which you would have to invest in going to the foreign country, and staying there until all of the necessary paperwork has been prepared and completed, you will have to appoint someone else to do the paperwork for you.

Usually, that will be a lawyer qualified and working in the foreign Country concerned.

Otherwise, it may be a friend of yours there , a relative, or a business partner .

Either way, you will have to execute a paper authorising that person to act on your behalf. “Execute” means in this context, sign it in the presence of a Notary Public .

Typical problems we come across on a regular basis include:-

The foreign party give a vague instruction to our client along the lines of “just sign a letter of authority”. Yeah, right.

If you go down this road, expect them to respond in due course along “Your letter of Authority is nearly right. But we can’t use it because ……..”

Really the best advice I can give is that if you are told from abroad to “just sign a short letter of authority” then you should say – Please draft the wording you need me to sign.

That way, your Turkish, Afghan, whatever agent must produce the form of authority which they require. And if they later say – “oh it’s not quite right” for any reason at all, then you are perfectly justified in saying – “Well, we signed the form you sent us, so if it’s not right, ok, but you will have to pay the wasted fees”.

There are many many rules and wrinkles which we in AtkinsonNotary are well aware of.

For Example, for Spain, sign each page. For Florida and California and India and Zimbabwe and South Africa, you need two witnesses as well as the Notary.

In Italy and South Africa, if you do not use black ink, your document will be rejected however correct it may otherwise be. Conversely, in Florida, you should use blue ink. Yes, I know.

And once the paperwork is correctly executed in England there is the question of legalisation.

For most countries of the world, a Foreign and Commonwealth Apostille is necessary. We can get this.

For many countries, the Apostille is not enough. For example, UAE will also require a consular stamp and currently a fee of £500.00 if there is a commercial aspect to the case.

There is increasingly a tendency for the Consular offices of different Countries to apply their own somewhat random rules.

China will need a certified copy of the passports of the signatories. And of the passport of a Company Director if any Company is the subject of the notarisations. It has recently decided to request two additional separate application forms to accompany each stamp application.

Bolivia needs every non-Spanish language document to be accompanied with a translation into Spanish, and the Consulate will charge for each. It is cheaper therefore to ensure that each Bolivian paper is written in two columns, one column being the Spanish text.

The Dominican Republic needs a Spanish translation or else the Consulate will prepare a translation and charge you for it.

Angola needs all of the above and will still reject the document if the translated languages are sewn into the document in the wrong order, – The Portuguese text must always appear first.

So there you are. It’s easy if you know what to do. [And we do] And it’s impenetrably difficult if you don’t.

What can I say? Come to AtkinsonNotary and we will sort your documents. First time, no hassle. Honestly, you will thank us for it. See the testimonials on the AtkinsonNotary website, and our Google reviews. Every one 5 star. [Tempting fate? I hope not].

Well if we don’t blow our own trumpet, who will?

So the song this week – In a Foreign Land.

As always, Please do contact me or Louise whenever you need Notarial certification or Legalisation for your Documents– at http://www.atkinsonnotary.com – or phone me on 0113 816 0116 (internationally 0044 113 8160116)