Admission to the Profession


Prospectus for the Academic Year 2018 / 2019

Prospectus for the Academic Year 2018 / 2019 NPC_Prospectus_2018_2019

The Diploma for Existing Notaries

The Diploma in Notarial Law & Practice (Dip.Not.L.) (F.N.P.I.) of the Faculty of Notaries Public in Ireland and the Institute of Notarial Studies offers existing notaries an opportunity of enhancing their skills and potential as notaries in Ireland. The course currently extends over one academic year. Instead of a traditional examination in the normal sense, an existing notary will be assigned a topic in due course by the Director of Education, Dr Eamonn G Hall, and the notary will submit a short dissertation.

The fee for the postgraduate diploma is set out in the Application Form available from

The Diploma for Candidate Notaries and Entry to the Profession of Notary

The Notarial Professional Course aligned with the Diploma in Notarial Law & Practice (Dip.N.L.) is the entry route to the profession of Notary Public for suitably qualified candidate notaries.

There are three stages in the process of appointment as a Notary Public in Ireland.

First, the candidate notary must comply with the relevant provisions of the Notaries Public Education, Training and Examination Regulations 2007-2014 (‘the regulations’) (available on and on In particular, candidate notaries must, at the date of application to sit the Faculty Examination (as set out in the regulations), be practising solicitors or barristers, have not less than five years post-qualification experience in the general practice of the law and at least two consecutive years of the general practice of law must be in the period immediately preceding the application to sit the Faculty Examination.

Second, the candidate notary must attend the Notarial Professional Course/Diploma in Notarial Law & Practice (Dip.Not.L.) at present extended over one academic year from October to May. It is planned that the present course commencing in October 2016 will be the last course which extends over one academic year.

This course is provided by the Institute of Notarial Studies (‘the Institute’), a division of the Faculty of Notaries Public in Ireland (‘the Faculty’). [The website for the Institute of Notarial Studies is at]

Currently, there are seven modules on the Notarial Professional Course/Diploma Course held on one afternoon a month over the academic year, October to May, at the Law Society of Ireland, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7, Ireland. The stipulated number of modules and their duration are under review. [See below for details of the modules.] Attendance at the modules is compulsory.

Having attended all the modules over the academic year, the candidate notary sits the Faculty Examination/ Diploma examination in May. If the candidate notary is successful, he or she moves to the third stage in the process of appointment.

Success at the Diploma examination does not guarantee appointment as a Notary Public. The third stage of the process of appointment as a Notary Public involves a formal Petition to the Chief Justice of Ireland in open Court on a Notice of Motion (to which the Faculty is a notice party as is the Law Society of Ireland). The Chief Justice decides on petitions for appointment and who should or should not be appointed. The admission criteria summarised here are without prejudice to any further directions which the Chief Justice may make from time to time.

Candidate notaries should consult the Rules of the Superior Courts and Hall & O’Connor Supplement to O’Connor’s The Irish Notary with regard to the formal Petition. The candidate notary must, for instance, be able to demonstrate that he or she is in a position to practise as a notary and, accordingly, one specific requirement is that the candidate notary has a public office for the conduct of notarial business. Where a candidate notary is an employed solicitor, including an in-house counsel for a corporation, or a partner in a law firm, a further requirement is a letter from the relevant employer’s Chief Executive Officer, or managing partner, consenting to the relevant candidate notary proceeding with the Petition and evidencing that the candidate is in a position to render a significant degree of public service. A number of recent decisions have evolved the position in this regard, principally In Re Alcock and In Re Hammond, which any candidate who might be affected should research. An employed candidate notary or a partner in a law firm must also undertake never to notarise documents for his/her employer or law firm and there is a corresponding undertaking required from the firm/corporation never to seek notarial services in connection with a matter in which the employer/corporation is involved. When presenting their Petition to the Chief Justice, all candidates supply a Certificate of Good Standing from their parent organisation, normally the Law Society of Ireland or the Bar Council of Ireland. In the case of an applicant who is or has been a practising lawyer in a foreign jurisdiction, the Faculty routinely seek a current Certificate of Good Standing from the relevant controlling or regulatory body in the country where the applicant is practising or previously practised as a lawyer.

Barristers are not permitted by the Bar Council to practise as a notary from a desk in the Law Library. The Bar Council also requires barristers to keep fees earned as a barrister separate from notarial fees.

There may be other requirements which may prove to be an impediment in relation to appointment and the candidate notary should familiarise himself/herself with all the requirements to avoid disappointment.

The fee for existing notaries and candidate notaries for the Notarial Professional Course/Diploma in Notarial Law & Practice 2018-2019 is inclusive of all textbooks, lecture notes and papers (provided by the Institute of Notarial Studies), refreshments at Module breaks and all examination fees. The fee is set out on the relevant Application Form. If awarded, the designation Dip.Not.L. (F.N.P.I) may be used on the Notary’s professional literature. Attendance at the modules entitles the notary to credit for CPD for notary and other law-related obligations. An application form is available from

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for Practising Notaries

Practising notaries are reminded that the Faculty has determined that a Notary Public must receive a credit of not less than 2 CPD hours on an annual basis. This requirement is under review. Existing notaries attending CPD may choose from the modules for the Notarial Professional Course/Diploma in Notarial Law & Practice set out below. The reduced fee for the CPD element only for existing practising notaries for the academic year 2018-2019 is €100 per 2.5 hour module – which may also be regarded as part of any other law profession CPD obligation.



The Notarial Professional Course The Diploma in Notarial law & Practice (Dip. Not. L.) (F.N.P.I.) CPD for Existing Notaries Academic Year October 2018 to May 2019

The venue is the Law Society of Ireland, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7 (Blue Room).

Unless otherwise notified, all modules will commence at 2-15pm (but it is regarded as important to register and be in attendance from c. 2-00pm).

The afternoon Notarial Professional Course/Dip.Not.L course will be for a period of c. 2.5 hours with a break for refreshments and the course will end by 5-00pm at the latest.

Module One – Tuesday 18 October 2018

History of the Notary Public in Ireland;
Functions, Powers and Duties of the Notary in Ireland

Group Discussion:

Module Two – Thursday 15 November 2018

Roman Law and its significance for the Notary;
Drafting of (and practice relating to) General Notarial
Certificates, Part 1;
Bills of Exchange including Noting and Protesting for Non-Acceptance/Non-Payment:

Module Three – Thursday 13 December 2018

Powers of Attorney (including enduring powers of attorney);
Company Law and Practice for the Notary;
Authentication of Company Documents;
Ships Protests;

Module Four – Thursday 17 January 2019

Private International law for the Notary;
The Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 and European Conventions affecting
Notaries Public;
eNotarisation and Developments concerning the eApostille;
Intercountry Adoption;

Module Five – Thursday 14 February 2019

Notarial Practice including Oaths, (Substance, Form and Procedure);
Attestation, Authentication and Certification of Documents, Deeds and
European Union Developments concerning the Notary;
EU Succession Law;
Electronic Commerce;
Data Protection Law for the Notary

Thursday Six – Thursday 14 March 2019

Money Laundering Legislation and the Notary;
Ethics for the Notary Public;
Code of Conduct for Notaries Public;
Keeping of Records by the Notary:
Drafting of (and practice relating to) General Notarial Acts/ Certificates Part ii;

Module Seven- Thursday 11 April 2019

Exercises in drafting for the Notary Public and preparation for the Faculty Examination/ Diploma in Notarial Law & Practice (Dip.Not.L.) (F.N.P.I.) Examination.

Faculty Examination – Thursday 9 May 2019

Blue Room – Law Society 2-30pm to 5-00pm

Graduation – Friday 21 June 2019

Presidents’ Hall – The Law Society
Contact Details
Dr Eamonn G Hall
Director of Education
087 322 9480
Faculty of Notaries Public/Institute of Notarial Studies