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Azad Jammu and Kashmir Notaries Act, 1985

(ACT NO. XXVI OF 1985)

[Dated November 27, 1985]

AN ACT to provide for law relating to profession of Notaries in Azad Jammu and Kashmir
WHEREAS it is expedient to provide for law relating to Profession of Notaries in Azad Jammu and Kashmir in the manner hereinafter appearing; it is hereby enacted as follows:‑–

1. Short title, extent and commencement.‑— (1) This Act may be called the Notaries Act, 1985.

(2) It extends to the whole of Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

(3) It shall come into force at once and shall be deemed to have taken effect on and from 4th day of November, 1985.

2. Definitions.‑ In this Act unless the context otherwise requires,—

(a) “Instrument” includes every document by which any right or liability is or purports to be created, transferred, modified, limited, extended, suspended, extinguished or recorded;

(b) “Legal Practitioner” means any advocate or attorney of the Supreme. Court or any advocate of the High Court or any pleader authorized under any law for the time being in force to practice in any Court of law;

(c) “Notary” means a person appointed as such under this Act;

(d) “Prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(e) “Register” means a register of Notaries to be maintained under section 4.

3. Power to appoint Notaries.‑ 2[(1) The Government, for the whole or any part of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, may appoint as notaries any legal practitioners,]

3[(2) There shall be twelve notaries at Capital Headquarter, ten notaries at Divisional Headquarter, six at District Headquarter and four in each Tehsil Headquarter.]

4 Registers.‑— (1) The Government shall maintain in such form as may be prescribed, a Register of the notaries appointed by the Government and entitled to practise as such under this Act.

(2) Every such Register shall include the following particulars about the notary whose name is entered therein, namely:—

(a) his full name, date of birth, residential and professional address;

(b) the date on which his name is entered in the Register;

(c) his qualification; and

(d) any other particulars which may be prescribed.

5 Entry of names in the register and issue or renewal of certificates of practice (1) Every notary who intends to practise as such shall on payment to the Government of the prescribed fee, if any, be entitled,—

(a) to have his name entered in the register maintained by the Government under section 4, and

(b) to a certificate authorizing him to practise for a period of three years from the date on which the certificate is issued to him.

(2) Every such notary who wishes to continue to practise after the expiry of his period for which his certificate of practice has been issued under this section shall on application made to the Government and payment of the prescribed fee, if any, be entitled to have the certificate of practice renewed for three years a time.

6. Annual publication of lists of notaries.‑— The Government shall, not later than the end of January each year, publish in the official Gazette a list of notaries appointed by the Government and in practice at the beginning of that year together with such details pertaining to them as may be prescribed.

7. Seal of Notaries.‑—- Every notary shall have and use, as occasion may arise, a seal of such form and design as nay be prescribed.

8. Functions of Notaries.‑— (1) A notary may do all or any of the following acts by virtue of his office, namely:‑–

(a) verify, authenticate, certify or attest the execution of any instrument;

(b) present any promissory note, hundi or bill of exchange for acceptance or payment or demand better security;

(c) note or protest the dishonor by non‑acceptance or non payment of any promissory note, hundi or bill of exchange or protest for better security or prepare acts of honour under the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 (XXVI of 1881), or serve notice of such note or protest;

(d) note and draw up ship’s protest, boats protest or protest relating to demurrage and other commercial matters;

(e) administer oath to or take affidavit from, any person;

(f) prepare bottomry and respondentia bonds, charter parties and other mercantile documents;

(g) prepare attest or authenticate any instrument in tended to take effect in any country or place outside Azad Jammu and Kashmir in such form and language as may confirm to the law of the place where such deed is intended to operate;

(h). translate, and verify the translation of, any document from one language into another;

(i) any other act which may be prescribed.

(2) No act specified in sub section (1) shall be deemed to be a notarial act except when it is done by a notary under his signature and official seal.

9. Bar of practice without certificate.‑—- Subject to the provisions of this section, no person shall practise as a notary or do any notarial act under the official seal of a notary unless he hold a certificate of practice in force issued to him under section 5:—

Provided that nothing in this sub‑section shall apply to the presentation of any promissory note, hundi or bill of exchange for acceptance or payment by the clerk of a notary acting on behalf of such notary.

10. Removal of names from Register.‑—– The Government may, by order remove from the Register maintained by it under section 4 the name of the notary if he,—

(a) makes a request to that effect; or

(b) has not paid the prescribed fee required to be paid by him; or

(c) is an undischarged insolvent; or

(d) has been found upon inquiry in the prescribed manner, to be guilty of such professional or other misconduct as, in the opinion of the Government, renders him unfit to practise as a notary.

11. Construction of reference to notaries public in other laws.‑— Subject to the provisions of section 16, any reference to a notary public in any other law shall be construed as a reference to a notary entitled to practise under this Act.

12. Penalty for falsely representing to be notary, etc.‑– Any person who‑‑‑ (a) falsely represents that he is notary without being appointed as such; or

(b) practises as a notary or does any notarial act in contravention of section 9, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months, or with fine, or with both.

13. Cognizance of offences.‑—- (1) No Court shall take cognizance of any offence committed by a notary in the exercise or purported exercise of his functions under this to save upon complaint in writing made by an officer authorized by the Government by general or special order in this behalf.

(2) No magistrate other than a Magistrate of the first class shall try an offence punishable under this Act.

14. Reciprocal arrangements for recognition of notarial acts done by foreign Notaries.‑ If the Government is satisfied that by the law or practice of any country or place outside Azad Jammu and Kashmir the notarial acts done by notaries within Azad Jammu and Kashmir are recognized for all or any limited purposes in that country or place, the Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette declare that the notarial act lawfully done by notaries within such country or place shall be recognized within Azad Jammu and Kashmir for all purposes, or as the case may be for such limited purpose as my be specified in the notification.

15. Power to make rules. (1) The Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, make rules to carry out the purposes of this Act.

(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:‑–

(a) the qualification of a notary, the form and manner in which application for appointment as a notary may be made and the disposal of such applications;

(b) the certificates, testimonials or proofs as to character, integrity, ability and competence which any person applying for appointment as a notary may be required to furnish;

(c) the fees payable for appointment as a notary and for the issue and renewal of a certificate of practice, and exemption, whether wholly or in part, from such fees in specified classes of cases;

(d) the fees payable to a notary for doing any notarial act;

(e) the form of Registers and the particulars to be entered therein;

(f) the form and design of the seal of notary;

(g) the manner in which inquir into allegations or professional or other misconduct of notaries may be made;

(h) the acts which a notary may do in addition to those specified in section 8 and the manner in which a notary may perform his functions.

16. Validation of Act XXVI of 1881.‑—- Nothing in this Act affects the provisions of the‑Negotiable Instruments Act 1881 (XXVI of 1881), or any appointment made in pursuance of section 138 of that Act or the powers of any person so appointed.

17. Savings.‑– Notwithstanding any judgement, decree or order of any court including High Court, every thing done, all actions taken, notifications issued, orders or appointments made, proceedings initiated, jurisdiction or powers exercised under the provisions of the Notaries Ordinance, 1980 (Ordinance XLIII of 1980) or its succeeding Ordinances issued from time to time shall be deemed to have been validly done, taken, issued, made, initiated or exercised under this Act.

1 This Act has been reported from the AJ&K Gazette Dated 27‑11‑1985, see issue 556 Vol. XXXI.

2. Section 3 was renumbered by the Notaries (Amendment) Act, 1992 (Act IV of 1992), see section 2 thereof.

3. The proviso to section 3 was replaced with the existing sub‑section (2).

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