01865 244661 / 01869 252244 enquiries@hmg-law.co.uk



126 High Street Oxford OX1 4DG

Telephone 01865 244661

Fax 01865 721263

Email stephen.ewens@hmg-law.co.uk




  1. Why a notary? The service provided by me is that of a Notary Public carrying out all permitted notarial activities including, where appropriate, arranging legalisation of documents and sending them to their final destination. An essential part of a notary’s role is to maintain and keep records. You can view details of how I handle your data in the Privacy Policy at the end of this document. The Privacy Policy at the end of this document explains how and why I collect, store, use and share your personal data.  It also explains your rights in relation to your personal data and how to contact me or supervisory authorities in the event you have a complaint.  Please read it carefully.

My use of your personal data is subject to your instructions, the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), other relevant UK and EU legislation and my professional duty of confidentiality. Under data protection law, I can only use your personal data if I have a proper reason for doing so.  Generally, I process your personal data:

  • To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations
  • For the performance of my contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract, or
  • For my legitimate interests or those of a third party.

It is almost always the case that you have been asked to see a notary because you have a document that needs to be used abroad. Seeing a notary is never a mere rubber-stamping exercise.  The international duty of a Notary involves a high standard of care.  This is not only towards the client but also to anyone who may rely on the document and to Governments or officials of other countries.  These people are entitled to assume that a Notary will ensure full compliance with the relevant requirements both here and abroad; and to rely on the Notary’s register and records. Great care is essential at every stage to minimise the risks of errors, omissions, alterations, fraud, forgery, money laundering, the use of false identity, and so on.


I offer appointments during business hours and occasionally outside of business hours in exceptional circumstances. I am also prepared to make home visits or visit corporate clients at their place of business. If the notarial appointments take place outside of my office I will make an additional charge to cover travelling time and expenses.  Occasionally I may not be able to see you within the timeframe you require, or I may decide that I am not able to act for you in which case I will advise you that that is the case and will provide you with the necessary information to locate an alternative notary.


  1. Signatures: The Notary should normally witness your signature. Please do not sign the document in advance of your appointment with me.


  1. Papers to be sent to me in advance: It will save time, expense and mistakes if, as long before the appointment as possible, you can let me have the originals or photocopies of:


  • The documents to be notarised;
  • Any letter or other form of instruction which you have received about what has to be done with the documents;
  • Your evidence of identification.


  1. Identification: I will need you to produce by way of formal identification the original of (in preferred order):
  • Your current passport (or, if not available);
  • A current new driving licence (with photo) or national identity card


If neither of the above are available, at least two of the following

  • A current government or police issue certificate bearing a photo or other formal means of identification;
  • A utility bill, credit card or bank statement showing your current address which should not be more than 3 months old or council tax bill;


You must also bring any other means of ID which may be referred to in the papers sent to you as being required such as a foreign Identity Card. I may also ask to see further evidence of identity such as marriage certificates etc and will advise you of this if necessary.


  1. Proof of names: In a case where the name on the document is different from the name you are currently using, or there has been a variation in the form of spelling of the name over the years, please provide me as appropriate with Certificates of Birth, Marriage or Divorce Decree of Change of Name Deed showing all the different names that you use.  If there has been a change of name, then I will need to see a copy of the Deed Poll or Statutory Declaration which dealt with it.


  1. Advice on the document: If you bring a document to me for authorisation as a Notary, I will advise you as to the formalities required for completing it. However, I will not be attempting to advise you about the transaction itself.


  1. Written Translations: It is essential that you understand what you are signing.
  • If the document is in a foreign language which you do not understand sufficiently, I may have to insist that a translation be obtained. If I arrange for a translation, a further fee will be payable and I will provide you with details of this.
  • If you arrange for a professional translation, the translator should add his/her name, address, relevant qualification, and a certificate stating: “Document X is a true and complete translation of document Y, to which this translation is attached.”


  1. Oral Interpreter: If you and I cannot understand each other because of a language difficulty, we may have to make arrangements for a competent interpreter to be available at our interview and this may involve a further fee.


  1. Companies, Partnerships etc: If a document is to be signed by you on behalf of a company, a partnership, a charity, club or other incorporated body, there are further requirements on which I may have to insist.  Please be prepared for these and telephone with any point of difficulty before attending on the appointment.


In each case:

  1. Evidence of identity of the authorised signatory (as listed above).
  2. A copy of the current letterhead (showing the registered office if it is a company).
  3. A Letter of Authority, Minute, Resolution or Power of Attorney, authorising you to sign the document.


Additionally, companies: Certificate of Incorporation and of any Change of Name, A copy of the Memorandum and Articles of Association Details of Directors and Secretaries.  In all instances I will be carrying out various company searches, which will may have an effect on the level of fees charged.


Additionally, partnerships, clubs, etc: A Partnership Agreement; or relevant Trust Deed; or Charter; or Constitution/Rules.


  1. Notarial charges and expenses: Details of my charges are set out below. Please note that if I have to make payments on your behalf such as legalisation fees, translator or interpreter fees, or other costs such as travelling expenses, your approval to these will be obtained and you are normally required to make payment in advance of any such amounts.


Charges: If the matter is simple I will endeavour to charge a fixed fee to include disbursements such as legalisation fees, postage, consular agent fees, courier fees, travelling expenses, translating costs and so on. VAT is payable on my fees.

For more complicated or time-consuming matters the fee will be based on my hourly rate of £280 subject to a minimum fee of £140, plus disbursements and VAT. The fee charged may include time spent on preliminary advice, drafting and preparation time, making and receiving telephone calls, correspondence written and received in all formats, arranging legalisation and record keeping.


Disbursements: Some documents require legalisation before they will be accepted for use in the receiving jurisdiction by obtaining an apostille through the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and, for some countries, additional legalisation is required through the relevant embassy or consulate.


Payment can be made by cash/cheque made payable to HMG Law LLP or by bank transfer.  Payment of my fee and disbursements is due when the document has been prepared which I may retain pending payment in full.


Occasionally unforeseen or unusual issues arise during the course of the matter which may result in a revision of my fee estimate. Examples of this could include where additional documents are required to be notarised, additional translations or legalisations are needed to meet the requirements of the receiving jurisdiction, third party fees are adjusted to reflect external factors such as fuel price changes and so on. I will notify you of any changes in the fee estimate as soon as possible.


  1. Typical Stages of a notarial transaction: Each notarial matter is different and the requirements will vary according to whether the client is a private individual or a company. Some of the typical key stages are likely to include:


  • Receiving and reviewing the documents to be notarised together with any instructions you may have received
  • Liaising with your legal advisors or other bodies to obtain the necessary documentation to deal with the document (e.g. information from Companies House or foreign registries, powers of attorney etc)
  • Checking the identity, capacity and authority of the person who is to sign the document
  • If a document is to be certified, checking with the issuing authorities that the document/award is genuine. In the case of academic awards, this would entail checking with the appropriate academic institutions.
  • Meeting with the signatory to verify their identity and to ascertain that they understand what they are signing and that they are doing so of their own free will and ensuring that the document is executed correctly
  • Drafting and affixing or endorsing a notarial certificate to the document
  • Arranging for the legalisation of the document as appropriate
  • Arranging for the storage of copies of all notarised documents in accordance with the requirements of the Notarial Practice Rules 2019


  1. Notarial Records and Data Protection: When I carry out my work for you, I am required to make an entry in a formal register, which is kept by me as a permanent record.  I will retain a copy of the notarised documentation with that record. My practice is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office. Personal data received from clients is held securely and not capable of being accessed externally. Data collected as part of notarial records is used solely for the purposes of meeting our professional legal responsibilities as Notaries Public. For full details of my PRIVACY POLICY and data processing terms please see the Privacy Policy at the end of this document.


  1. Insurance: In the interests of my clients I maintain professional indemnity insurance at a level of at least £1,000,000.00 per claim.


  1. Termination/ Your Right to Cancel: You may terminate your instructions to me at any time by giving me reasonable written notice. All fees and disbursements incurred up to the date of termination will be charged.


Consumer Cooling Off Cancellation Period –Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013 (“CCR”):

Where the CCR apply (typically where you are an individual consumer and my contract with you was concluded either at or following a meeting with you or by a form of distance communication) you have a cancellation period of 14 days after the date you sign my retainer letter or the date on which you continue to give me instructions, whichever is earlier.

You can cancel your contract within the cancellation period by giving me a clear statement and I will reimburse all payments received from you by the same method that you used, at no cost to you, without undue delay, and not later than 14 days after the day on which you inform me of the cancellation.


If you ask me to begin work during the cancellation period, you can still cancel but you must pay me an amount in proportion to the work which I have performed and this proportion will not be reimbursed to you.


  1. Termination by me: I reserve the right to terminate my engagement by you if I have good reason to do so, for example, if you do not pay a bill or comply with my request for a payment on account or you fail to give me the co-operation which I am reasonably entitled to expect.


  1. Complaints: My notarial practice is regulated through the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury:

The Faculty Office

1, The Sanctuary


London  SW1P 3JT

Telephone 020 7222 5381                  Email Faculty.office@1thesanctuary.com

Website www.facultyoffice.org.uk


If you are dissatisfied about the service you have received please do not hesitate to contact me.

If we are unable to resolve the matter you may then complain to the Notaries Society of which I am a member, who have a Complaints Procedure which is approved by the Faculty Office.  This procedure is free to use and is designed to provide a quick resolution to any dispute.  In that case please write (but do not enclose any original documents) with full details of your complaint to :-

The Secretary of The Notaries Society

Old Church Chambers

23 Sandhill Road

St James

Northampton.  NN5 5LH

Email secretary@thenotariessociety.org.uk               Tel : 01604 758908


If you have any difficulty in making a complaint in writing please do not hesitate to call the Notaries Society/the Faculty Office for assistance.


Finally, even if you have your complaint considered under the Notaries Society Approved Complaints Procedure, you may at the end of that procedure, or after a period of 6 months from the date you first notified me that you were dissatisfied, make your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman*, if you are not happy with the result :

Legal Ombudsman

P O Box 6806

Wolverhampton   WV1 9WJ

Tel : 0300 555 0333    Email :  enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk

Website :  www.legalombudsman.org.uk


If you decide to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman you must refer your matter to the Legal Ombudsman :-

  • Within six months of receiving a final response to your complaint and
  • Six years from the date of act/omission; or
  • Three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint (only if the act or omission took place more than six years ago)

The act or omission, or when you should have reasonably known there was cause for complaint, must have been after 5th October 2010.


*certain kinds of commercial entities are not eligible to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman – please refer to the Legal Ombudsman Scheme Rules or consult the Faculty Office.


I hope that these notes are of help to you in understanding what is expected of each of us.




                                        STEPHEN EDWARD EWENS PRIVACY POLICY

Key Terms
It w
ould be helpful to start by explaining some key terms used in this policy:

I, me, my Stephen Edward Ewens
Personal data Any information relating to an identified or identifiable individual
Special category personal data

Personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious beliefs, philosophical beliefs or trade union membership

Genetic and biometric data

Data concerning health, sex life or sexual orientation

Personal Data I Collect About You

The table below sets out the personal data I will or may collect in the course of advising and/or acting for you.

Personal data I will collect  

Your name, address and telephone number

Information to enable me to check and verify your identity, e.g. your date of birth or passport details

Electronic contact details, e.g. your email address and mobile phone number

Information relating to the matter in which you are seeking my advice or representation

Your financial details so far as relevant to your instructions


This personal data is required to enable me to provide my services to you. If you do not provide personal data I ask for, it may delay or prevent me from providing services to you.


How Your Personal Data is Collected

I collect most of this information from you. However, I may also collect information:

  • from publicly accessible sources, e.g. Companies House or HM Land Registry;
  • directly from a third party, e.g:
    • sanctions screening providers;
    • credit reference agencies;
    • client due diligence providers;
  • from a third party with your consent, e.g:
    • your bank or building society, another financial institution or advisor;
    • consultants and other professionals I may engage in relation to your matter;
    • your employer and/or trade union, professional body or pension administrators;
    • your doctors, medical and occupational health professionals;
  • via the website of my Solicitors’ firm HMG Law LLP —we use cookies on our website;
  • via my information technology (IT) systems, e.g:
    • case management, document management and time recording systems;
    • door entry systems and reception logs;
    • automated monitoring of the website of my Solicitors’ firm HMG Law LLP and other technical systems, such as my computer networks and connections, CCTV and access control systems, communications systems, email and instant messaging systems.


How and Why I Use Your Personal Data
Under data protection law, I can only use your personal data if I have a proper reason for doing so, e.g:

  • to comply with my legal and regulatory obligations;
  • for the performance of my contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract;
  • for my legitimate interests or those of a third party; or
  • where you have given consent.


A legitimate interest is when I have a business or commercial reason to use your information, so long as this is not overridden by your own rights and interests.

The table below explains what I use (process) your personal data for and mymyeasons for doing so:


What we use your personal data for

Our reasons
To provide legal services to you For the performance of my contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract

Conducting checks to identify my clients and verify their identity

Screening for financial and other sanctions or embargoes

Other processing necessary to comply with professional, legal and regulatory obligations that apply to my business, e.g. under health and safety regulation or rules issued by my professional regulator

To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations
Gathering and providing information required by or relating to audits, enquiries or investigations by regulatory bodies To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations
Ensuring business policies are adhered to, e.g. policies covering security and internet use For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, i.e. to make sure I am following my own internal procedures so I can deliver the best service to you
Operational reasons, such as improving efficiency, training and quality control For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, i.e. to be as efficient as I can so I can delivery the best service for you at the best price
Ensuring the confidentiality of commercially sensitive information

For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, i.e. to protect my intellectual property and other commercially valuable information

To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations

Statistical analysis to help me manage my practice, e.g. in relation to my financial performance, client base, work type or other efficiency measures For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, i.e. to be as efficient as I can so I can deliver the best service for you at the best price
Preventing unauthorised access and modifications to systems

For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, i.e. to prevent and detect criminal activity that could be damaging for me and for you

To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations

Updating client records

For the performance of my contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract

To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations

For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, e.g. making sure that I can keep in touch with my clients about existing and new services

Statutory returns To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations
Ensuring safe working practices, staff administration and assessments

To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations

For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, e.g. to make sure I am following my own internal procedures and working efficiently so I can deliver the best service to you

Marketing myr services to:

—existing and former clients;

—third parties who have previously expressed an interest in my services;

—third parties with whom I have had no previous dealings.

For my legitimate interests or those of a third party, i.e. to promote my business to existing and former clients
Credit reference checks via external credit reference agencies For my legitimate interests or a those of a third party, i.e. for credit control and to ensure my clients are likely to be able to pay for my services
External audits and quality checks, e.g. for Lexcel, ISO or Investors in People accreditation and the audit of my accounts

For my legitimate interests or a those of a third party, i.e. to maintain my accreditations so I can demonstrate I operate at the highest standards

To comply with my legal and regulatory obligations

The above table does not apply to Special category personal data, which I will only process with your explicit consent.


Promotional Communications

I may use your personal data to send you updates (by email, text message, telephone or post) about legal developments that might be of interest to you and/or information about my services, including exclusive offers, promotions or services.

I have a legitimate interest in processing your personal data for promotional purposes (see above ‘How and why I use your personal data’). This means I do not usually need your consent to send you promotional communications. However, where consent is needed, I will ask for this consent separately and clearly.

I will always treat your personal data with the utmost respect and never sell or share it with other organisations for marketing purposes.

You have the right to opt out of receiving promotional communications at any time by contacting me.

I may ask you to confirm or update your marketing preferences if you instruct me to provide further services in the future, or if there are changes in the law, regulation, or the structure of my business.


Who I Share Your Personal Data With

I routinely share personal data with:

  • professional advisers who I instruct on your behalf or refer you to, e.g. barristers, medical professionals, accountants, tax advisors or other experts;
  • other third parties where necessary to carry out your instructions;
  • credit reference agencies;
  • my insurers and brokers;
  • external auditors, e.g. in relation to ISO or Lexcel accreditation and the audit of my accounts;
  • my banks; and
  • external service suppliers, representatives and agents that I use to make my business more efficient, e.g. typing services, marketing agencies, document collation or analysis suppliers.


I only allow our service providers to handle your personal data if I am satisfied they take appropriate measures to protect your personal data. I also impose contractual obligations on service providers to ensure they can only use your personal data to provide services to me and to you.

I may disclose and exchange information with law enforcement agencies and regulatory bodies to comply with my legal and regulatory obligations.

I may also need to share some personal data with other parties, such as potential buyers of some or all of my business or during a re-structuring. Usually, information will be anonymised but this may not always be possible. The recipient of the information will be bound by confidentiality obligations.


Where Your Personal Data is Held

Information may be held at my offices and those of my third party agencies, service providers, representatives and agents as described above (see ‘Who I share your personal data with’).

Some of these third parties may be based outside the European Economic Area. For more information, including on how I safeguard your personal data when this occurs, see below: ‘Transferring your personal data out of the EEA’.


How Long Your Personal Data Will be Kept

I will keep your personal data after I have finished advising or acting for you. I will do so for one of these reasons:

  • to respond to any questions, complaints or claims made by you or on your behalf;
  • to show that I treated you fairly;
  • to keep records required by law.


I will not retain your data for longer than necessary for the purposes set out in this policy. Different retention periods apply for different types of data

When it is no longer necessary to retain your personal data, I will delete or anonymise it.


Transferring Your Personal Data out of the EEA

To deliver services to you, it is sometimes necessary for me to share your personal data outside the European Economic Area (EEA), e.g:

  • with your and myr service providers located outside the EEA;
  • if you are based outside the EEA;
  • where there is an international dimension to the matter in which I am advising you.


These transfers are subject to special rules under European and UK data protection law.

Some non-EEA countries do not have the same data protection laws as the United Kingdom and EEA. I will, however, ensure the transfer complies with data protection law and all personal data will be secure. My standard practice is to use standard data protection contract clauses which have been approved by the European Commission.


Your Rights

You have the following rights, which you can exercise free of charge:

Access The right to be provided with a copy of your personal data
Rectification The right to require me to correct any mistakes in your personal data
To be forgotten The right to require me to delete your personal data—in certain situations
Restriction of processing The right to require me to restrict processing of your personal data—in certain circumstances, e.g. if you contest the accuracy of the data
Data portability The right to receive the personal data you provided to me, in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format and/or transmit that data to a third party—in certain situations
To object

The right to object:

—at any time to your personal data being processed for direct marketing (including profiling);

—in certain other situations to my continued processing of your personal data, e.g. processing carried out for the purpose of my legitimate interests.

Not to be subject to automated individual decision-making The right not to be subject to a decision based solely on automated processing (including profiling) that produces legal effects concerning you or similarly significantly affects you

For further information on each of those rights, including the circumstances in which they apply, please see the Guidance from the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) on individuals’ rights under the General Data Protection Regulation.


If you would like to exercise any of those rights, please:

  • email, call or write to me;
  • let me have enough information to identify you (e.g. your full name, address and client or matter reference number);
  • let me have proof of your identity and address (a copy of your driving licence or passport and a recent utility or credit card bill); and
  • let me know what right you want to exercise and the information to which your request relates.


Keeping Your Personal Data Secure

I have appropriate security measures to prevent personal data from being accidentally lost, or used or accessed unlawfully.  I limit access to your personal data to those who have a genuine business need to access it.  Those processing your information will do so only in an authorised manner and are subject to a duty of confidentiality.

I also have procedures in place to deal with any suspected data security breach.  I will notify you and any applicable regulator of a suspected data security breach where I am legally required to do so.


How to Complain

I hope that I can resolve any query or concern you may raise about my use of your information.

The General Data Protection Regulation also gives you right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority, in particular in the European Union (or European Economic Area) state where you work, normally live or where any alleged infringement of data protection laws occurred.  The supervisory authority in the UK is the Information Commissioner who may be contacted at https://ico.org,uk/concerns or telephone 0303 123 1113.


Changes to This Privacy Policy

This privacy policy was published on 1 December 2019 and last updated on 1 December 2019.

I may change this privacy policy from time to time; when I do I will inform you.


How to Contact Me

Please contact by post, email or telephone if you have any questions about this privacy policy or the information I hold about you.