There are two main categories of prospective clients who would want to retain a local public notary in Sydney, New South Wales:

  • Those who are located within Sydney, NSW; and
  • Those who are located outside Australia.

Both of these type of potential clients can seek the professional services of a local notary. However, whether or not the notary accepts the retainer and agrees to provide the client whatever his personal or business needs require, is subject to (a) the notary’s ability to receive legitimate instructions from his client, (b) the notary’s compliance with his legal obligations under the law, and of course (c) for the client to be able to accept service of the notarial act once it is completed.

If circumstances permit, a notary may be in a position to attend the office of the client for his convenience (for more information, see Availability). The type of notarial service that can be provided to a client who is not in a position to appear before the notary in person may therefore be somewhat limited or it might involve additional processes that the client will have to engage to satisfy the notary that his legal obligations have been complied with (see Client Conferences and Distance Instructions). Most commonly, this may require some form of identification so that the notary is satisfied that his client is in fact the person that his client purports to be.

Clients should note and understand that the Notary Public conducts his practice to strict professional standards, and these may require that a request for service might be refused if and when the notary is not satisfied that certain pertinent information is either not provided, cannot be independently verified, or for some other reason may adversely impact on the notary’s legal professional liability or traduce the reputation of the profession.

A notarial act must contain various essential characteristics, and the absence or defect in any of them may result in the notarisation invalid in some way, and this may cause serious problems for the the notary himself as well as the client seeking his services (see Characteristics and Particulars of a Notarial Act or Certificate). Notaries Public will therefore be careful in the discharge of their duties and responsibilities when notarising documents or producing notarial certificates and acts.