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Notarial Law

A.M. No. 02-8-13-SC

2004 Rules on Notarial Practice

What effect does notarization have on a document?

Notarization converts a private document into a public document and renders the
document admissible in court as evidence without need for further proof of its
authenticity. A notarized document is entitled, by law, to full faith and credit upon its face.
Notarization also vests upon the document the presumption of regularity unless it is
impugned by strong, complete and conclusive proof. (Sec. 30, Rule 132, Rules of
Court; De Rosales vs. Ramos, A.C. No. 5645, July 2, 2002)

Purpose of the 2004 Notarial Rules

To promote, serve and protect public interest;

To simplify, clarify, and modernize the rules governing notaries public; and

To foster ethical conduct among notaries public.

Qualifications

Citizen of the Philippines

Must be over 21 years of age

Resident of the Philippines for at least 1 year and maintains a regular place of work or
business in the city or province where the commission is to be issued

Member of the Philippine Bar in good standing with clearances from the Office of the
Bar Confidant of the Supreme Court and the IBP
Must not have been convicted in the first instance of any crime involving moral
turpitude.

Petition filed at and commission issued by the Executive Judge.

Renewal: written application with the Executive Judge for the renewal of his commission
within 45 days before the expiration thereof. A mark, image or impression of the seal of the
notary public shall be attached to the application.

Failure to file said application will result in the deletion of the name of the notary public in
the register of notaries public.

The notary public thus removed from the Register of Notaries Public may only be reinstated
therein after he is issued a new commission in accordance with the rules.

Clearances from:

Executive Judge of the RTC who will issue the notarial commission;

Office of the Bar Confidant;

Local Chapter of the IBP where is applicant is seeking notarial commission; and

NBI

Term of Office: 2 years commencing on the 1st day of January on the year the commission
was made unless otherwise revoked or the notary public resigns.

Jurisdiction: within the territorial jurisdiction of the commissioning court.


Payment of application fee

Hearing of the petition is summary in nature

Notice shall be posted in the designated court areas and published in a newspaper
of general circulation

Any person who has cause to oppose the same may file a written opposition

Powers and Limitations

Perform the following notarial act:

Acknowledgments

Oath and affirmations

Jurats

Signature witnessings

Copy certifications

Any other act authorized

SECTION 1. Acknowledgment: refers to an act in which an individual on a single occasion:

appears in person before the notary public and presents an integrally complete
instrument or document;

is attested to be personally known to the notary public or identified by the notary public
through competent evidence of identity as defined by these Rules; and
represents to the notary public that the signature on the instrument or document was
voluntarily affixed by him for the purposes stated in the instrument or document, declares
that he has executed the instrument or document as his free and voluntary act and deed,
and, if he acts in a particular representative capacity, that he has the authority to sign in
that capacity.

REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES)

CITY/MUNICIPALITY OF ______) SS.

BEFORE ME, a Notary Public for and in the (Province/City/Municipality) of _____________,


personally appeared _____________ with _______________ID No. _____________ issued on
_____________ at _____________ (and Tax Identification No. (T.I.N.) _____________), known to me
and to me known to be the same person who executed the foregoing instrument which
(he/she) acknowledged to me as (his/her) free and voluntary act and deed, consisting of
only ______ (____) page/s, including this page in which this Acknowledgement is written, duly
signed by (him/her) and (his/her) instrumental witnesses on each and every page hereof.

WITNESS MY HAND AND SEAL this _____________ at _____________, Philippines.

NOTARY PUBLIC

Doc. No. _____;

Page No. _____;

Book No. _____;

Series of ______.

SEC. 2. Affirmation or Oath. - The term Affirmation; or & Oath; refers to an act in which
an individual on a single occasion:

appears in person before the notary public;

is personally known to the notary public or identified by the notary public through
competent evidence of identity as defined by these Rules; and
avows under penalty of law to the whole truth of the contents of the instrument or
document.

SEC. 6. Jurat. Jurat; refers to an act in which an individual on a single occasion:

appears in person before the notary public and presents an instrument or document;

is personally known to the notary public or identified by the notary public through
competent evidence of identity as defined by these Rules;

signs the instrument or document in the presence of the notary; and

takes an oath or affirmation before the notary public as to such instrument or


document.

SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN to before me, this _____________, by _____________ who exhibited to me
(his/her) ______ ID No. _____________ issued at _____________ on _____________, and who is the
same person who personally signed before me the foregoing affidavit and acknowledged
that he executed the same.

Notary Public

Doc. No. ______;

Page No. ______;

Book No. ______;

Series of ______.

SEC. 14. Signature Witnessing. -The term refers to a notarial act in which an individual on a
single occasion:

appears in person before the notary public and presents an instrument or document;

is personally known to the notary public or identified by the notary public through
competent evidence of identity as defined by these Rules; and
signs the instrument or document in the presence of the notary public.

BEFORE ME, a Notary Public in and for the City of __________________, this ____________day of
_______________, personally appeared _________________who presented to me ( name of
document) which he voluntarily signed in my presence.

WITNESS MY HAND AND SEAL this ____day of ____________, City of _______________,


Philippines.

SEC. 4. Copy Certification. - refers to a notarial act in which a notary public:

is presented with an instrument or document that is neither a vital record, a public record,
nor publicly recordable;

copies or supervises the copying of the instrument or document;

compares the instrument or document with the copy; and

determines that the copy is accurate and complete.

This is to certify that I was presented with a______(name of instrument) which is neither a
vital record, a public record, nor publicly recordable; that I copied/supervised the copying of
the instrument; and that I compared the copied instrument with the original copy and I
hereby certify that the copy is accurate and complete.

Certify the affixing of a signature by thumb or other mark on an instrument or


document presented for notarization if:

Affixed in his presence and two other disinterested and unaffected witnesses
to the document.

Both witnesses sign their own names in addition to the thumb or other mark.
There is an indication below the mark :Thumb or Other Mark affixed by (name of
signatory of the mark) in the presence of (names and addresses of the witnesses) and
undersigned notary public.

Notarized the mark through acknowledgment, jurat or signature witnessing.

( Thumbmark of XXXX)

(Sgd. YYYY) (Sgd. ZZZZ)

Thumbmark affixed by XXXX in the presence of YYYY, a resident of Cebu City, and ZZZZ, a
resident of Tagbilaran City, and the undersigned Notary Public.

NOTARY PUBLIC

Sign on behalf of a person who is physically unable to sign or make a mark on an


instrument or document if:

He is directed by the person who is unable to sign.

The signature is affixed in the presence of 2 disinterested and unaffected


witnesses to the document.

Both witnesses sign their own names.

It is indicated that: Signature affixed by notary public in presence of (names and


addresses of witnesses).

Notarized his signature by acknowledgment or jurat.

Gen.Rule: Notarial act must only be performed within his regular place of work.

Exceptions: (performed at the request of the parties and at the following sites within his
territorial jurisdiction)
Public offices, convention halls, and similar places where oaths may be administered;

Public function areas in hotels and similar places;

Hospitals and other medical institutions where a party is confined for treatment; and

Any place where a party to an instrument is under detention.

No notarial act if persons involved in the instrument is:

Not in the notarys presence personally at the time of the notarization; and

Not personally known to the notary public or otherwise identified by the notary
public through competent evidence of identity.

A notary public cannot notarize a document if he/she:

is a party to the instrument or document that is to be notarized;

will receive, as a direct or indirect result, any commission, fee, advantage, right, title,
interest, cash, property, or other consideration, except as provided by the rules and by
law; or

is a spouse, common-law partner, ancestor, descendant, or relative by affinity


or consanguinity of the principal within the fourth degree.

Not perform any notarial act for any person requesting an act even if he tenders the
appropriate fee stipulated in the rules if:

the notary knows or has good reason to believe the notarial act or transaction is
unlawful or immoral;
the signatory shows a demeanor which engenders in the mind of the notary public
reasonable doubt as to the formers knowledge of the consequences of the
transaction requiring a notarial act; and

in the notarys judgment, the signatory is not acting on his or her own free will.
Function of a Notary Public

To guard against any illegal or immoral arrangements. That function would be


defeated if the notary public were one of the signatories to the instrument. For then, he
would be interested in sustaining the validity thereof as it directly involves himself and the
validity of his own act, and the very purpose of the acknowledgement, which is to minimize
fraud would be thwarted. (Villarin v. Sabate, February 9, 2000)

Notarial Register

Keep, maintain, protect and provide for lawful inspection.

Chronological official notarial register or notarial acts consisting of a permanently bound


book with numbered pages.

Keep only one active notarial register at any given time.

Revocation of Commission

Revocation done by the Executive Judge.

Upon a verified complaint by any interested, affected or aggrieved person.

Notary public may be required to file a verified answer to the complaint.

If not satisfactory, Exec. Judge may order a summary hearing.

Appeal may be made to the SC for review, pending appeal, the sanction is
immediately executory, unless otherwise ordered by the SC.

Exec. Judge is also empowered to motu proprio initiate the administrative


proceedings.

Revocation of Commission

Grounds:

Fails to keep a notarial register;


Fails to make proper entries;

Fails to send the copy of the entries to the Executive Judge within the first 10
days of the following month;

Fails to affix to acknowledgments the date of expiration of his commission;

Fails to submit his notarial register;

Fails to make his report within a reasonable time;

Fails to require the presence of parties at the time of the notarial act;

Fails to identify a principal on the basis of personal knowledge or competent


evidence;

Executes a false or incomplete certificate;

Knowingly performs or fails to perform any act mandated by the Notarial


Practice Act; and

Commits any other dereliction which is adjudged by the Executive Judge as a good
cause for revocation of commission or imposition of administrative sanction.

Competent Evidence Identity

Identification of an individual based on:

At least one current identification document issued by an official agency bearing


the photograph and signature of the individual; or

The oath or affirmation of one credible witness not privy to the instrument,
document or transaction who is personally known to the notary public or any
two credible witnesses (with documentary identification) and who personally
knows the individual.
ESPINOSA v. OMANA

Kasunduan Ng Paghihiwalay

In preparing and notarizing a void document, Respondent violated Rule 1.01, Canon 1 (duty
not to engage in unlawful, dishonest, immoral or deceitful). Respondent knew fully that the
Kasunduan has no legal effect and is against public policy. Even granting arguendo that, it
was her part-time staff who notarized the contract, it only showed Respondents negligence
in doing her notarial duties. A notary public is personally responsible for the entries
in his notarial register and he could not relieve himself of this responsibility by
passing the blame on his secretaries or any member of his staff.

TAN TIONG BIO v. GONZALES

Respondent was duly commissioned as a notary public for Quezon City but notarized a deed
of sale in Pasig City. In suspending Respondent, the Supreme Court reasoned that, while
seemingly appearing to be a harmless incident, Respondents act of notarizing documents in
a place outside of or beyond the authority granted by his notarial commission, partakes of
malpractice of law and falsification.

UY v. SAO

Notarization is not an empty, meaningless, routinary act but one invested with
substantive public interest converting a private document into a public document
making it admissible in evidence without further proof of authenticity. As such,
only those who are qualified and authorized may act as notaries public. Respondents
reliance upon his aides representation that his commission had been renewed
shows disregard of the requirements for issuance of a notarial commission.
DELA CRUZ v. DIMAANO, JR.

The Supreme Court held that notaries public should refrain from affixing their signature
and notarial seal on a document unless the persons who signed it are the same
individuals who executed it and personally appeared before them to attest to the
truth of what are stated therein, otherwise, notaries public would not be able to
verify the genuineness of the signatures and whether the document is the partys
free act or deed.

Notaries public are required by the Notarial Law to certify that the party to the instrument
has acknowledged and presented the proper residence certificate.

LINCO v. LACEBAL

The Supreme Court suspended Respondent from law practice and being a notary public
finding that, affiants previous personal appearance before Respondent does not
justify the notarization of the deed due to affiants absence on the day of
notarization. The rule requires Respondent not to notarize a document unless the
persons who signed the same are the very same persons who executed and
personally appeared before him to attest to its contents and truthfulness. Further,
in the notarial acknowledgment, Respondent attested to affiants personal appearance
before him on the day of notarization, yet, affiant clearly could not have appeared
as he already died a day before. Clearly, Respondent made a false statement and
violated Rule 10.01 of the Code of Professional Responsibility and his oath as a lawyer.