What is a Notary?

A Notary Public is…

Notaries Public in British Columbia are legal professionals empowered to provide all manner of non-contentious legal services to the public, including (but not limited to) residential real estate transactions, preparing wills, powers of attorney, health care directives, and statutory declarations. The duties and powers of a Notary Public are defined in section 18 of the Notaries Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 334.

Notary’s strength is in preparing accurate, reliable legal documents in order to assist the general public in British Columbia.

Before candidates can begin training for a career as a Notary Public, they must:

  • meet the strict requirements for business experience, integrity and trustworthiness,
  • passed stringent personal and financial background checks,
  • completed their post–secondary education,
  • have five years of business experience in a related field such as Real Estate, Insurance, Accounting, or the Legal field, and
  • be approved in principle.

Each applicant then must completed an intensive multi-phased program that involves both academic and the practical aspects of a Notarial practice. At the end of the two year Master of Arts in Applied Legal Studies (offered only at Simon Fraser University) course, each candidate must write and pass the six British Columbia Statutory Examinations before being commissioned for life by the British Columbia Supreme Court.

A Notary Public must continually comply with our Society’s Bylaws, Rules and Regulations and Code of Ethics.
We are fully insured with Error and Omission Insurance and must participate in our Society’s Special Indemnity Fund providing public assurance and protection.

For more information about BC Notaries, please visit The Society of Notaries Public of British Columbia website at www.notaries.bc.ca.