When living in Malta, there will likely come a time when you have to get a document notarized. This makes it necessary to be educated about the fees involved to ensure you’re prepared for the expenses and avoid potential issues or delays. There are a few important facts to learn about calculating notary fees and the cost of the different services provided.
It’s important to begin by understanding that certain laws are in place for what notaries can charge in Malta. This means that you’ll be required to pay a minimum amount of money, but also can’t be charged higher than a specific amount. There are also certain times that you should expect to use a notary’s services.
By gaining a deeper understanding of the services that are provided by notaries, you can discover the benefits of enlisting the help of a professional. They can make it easier to complete different types of transactions quicker and more efficiently, as well as ensure that specific documents are recognized.
Read on to understand how much you’ll pay for notary fees in Malta and what you can expect from their services.
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What Do Notaries Do?
Notaries are professionals that draft different types of legal documents, which include the final deed of a sale or the promise of a sale when you’re purchasing a property in Malta. They’re responsible for confirming that the property is legally owned by the seller and verifying there aren’t any outstanding debts or mortgages connected to the property.
These are some of the things that a notary can help you with:
- Buying property as a foreigner
- Selling property
- Donations of property
- Private writings
- Exchange of property
When to Use a Notary
There are many specific circumstances you’ll need to seek the services of a notary when completing different types of transactions. You can expect to use a notary when you plan to sell or buy a home during a real estate transaction in Malta.
You can also use their services for:
- Adopting a child
- Obtaining a durable power of attorney for healthcare
- Using an affidavit of identity
- Transferring the financial power of attorney
- Submitting passport applications
- Consenting for travel documents for minors
- Obtaining deed of trust or a mortgage grant
- Selling a vehicle
- Selling property that is registered to the state
You can find a notary in Malta by seeking the help of a real estate agent in the local area because they’re often connected to trusted notaries in the local area.
The Yellow Pages and the Maltese Notariat website are also helpful resources to use if you aren’t already using the services of a real estate agent. Here at Malta Guides, I will also be happy to refer you to professional, trusted notaries.
What to Expect When Hiring a Notary
When you consult the service of a notary in Malta, you can expect the public officer to have the power to administer oaths and receive affidavits, depositions, and acknowledgements during transactions.
They’re legally authorised to witness individuals signing legal documents that are related to estates and deeds. You can also expect them to verify the authenticity of specific legal documents while serving as witnesses.
The duties of a notary include identifying fraud to protect the client they’re working for, ensuring the state of mind of all of the parties involved in the transaction or deal, completing the notarial certificate on the documents involved, using a notary journal to maintain thorough records, and handling loan documents.
If needed, they can also handle other documents, such as birth or marriage certificates and contracts.
You can expect notaries to be extremely thorough, organised, and detailed. They’ve undergone extensive training and have passed exams to become recognised as a legal notary in Malta, which means they must meet specific standards to continue offering their services to the public.
They’ll identify the specific individuals that appear before them by viewing their proof of identity or by knowing them as a personal acquaintance. They also have to confirm that each party has a sound mind before everyone signs all of the documents.
This means that everyone taking part in the transaction should be of legal age, not being coerced, intoxicated, medicated, or under the influence of any substances that can affect their judgment.
Notary Fees in Malta
It’s important to understand that notary fees are standard by law, specifically Chapter 55 of the Laws of Malta. Notaries are required to charge specific rates for their services by law to ensure they can legally provide their services to the public.
In general, the average notary fee that is charged to the public for residential or commercial real estate transactions is one percent of the price of the property that is being purchased.
When you pay notary fees for purchasing a home in Malta, the fees should be within the minimum and maximum amount that is legally established in Malta. Avoid using the services of a notary that go above or below legal guidelines, since it could mean they’re providing their services illegally to the public.
Online bill calculators are available to the public for calculating notary fees before using their services. This can offer a quick and efficient process to avoid mistakes when determining what you’ll be charged.
Typically, notary fees are paid in two separate stages. Most notaries require their clients to pay 33 percent of the total price on signing the preliminary agreement and the remaining 67 percent with the publication of the final deed of sale.
Keep in mind that with the different services obtained, there’s a difference between expenses and fees. The expenses of notaries can increase due to certain searches that are performed by the Land Registration Area, an examination of the root title, and burdens on the property.
Notaries Fees: Worth It for Some Peace of Mind
I understand, extra fees aren’t something you seek out. Buying a home is expensive enough as it is.
However, especially as an expat navigating a foreign system, having a public official by your side can reassure you that things are being done by the books. I don’t know about you, but I’ll happily pay a little extra to be certain that I’m not being taken advantage of.
If you want to know more about notaries, how to find one, and their fees don’t hesitate to contact me — I’m happy to answer your questions.