You really do. In most legal systems properties are handed over between seller and buyer with help of public notary („notariusz”). Same in Poland. You may be used in your country of origin for public notary certyfing signatures to document prepared by your lawyers. In Poland it works differently. There is a special form of authenticated deed for property ownership change. It is a formal document prepared not by sides of the deal or their lawyers, but by public notary himself. He/she writes down agreed paragraphs and verifies them according to polish law. This form of document is called „akt notarialny” and is the only possible form for property ownership handover.
When do you need a public notary?
Signing preliminary agreement („umowa przedwstępna”) – for this action using help of public notary is your choice. You can have regular agreement signed by sides of the deal with no witness or you may use notary to sign „akt notarialny”. Form of „akt notarialny” cost you money, but gives you a few advantages:
- You can put formal claim to finalize the deal in Property Registry.
- You can introduce strong security records, like 777 (there will be separate blog entry about this one in the near future).
- You can finalize the deal despite your counterpart would like to back out of it.
Signing final agreement („umowa przeniesienia własności”) – „akt notarialny” is the only form you can handover rights to a property between parties.
Issuing power of attorney („pełnomocnictwo”) – if you like to empower somebody to sign „akt notarialny” in your name, the power of attorney document must have the same strength, so requires another „akt notarialny”.
Language of documents
By general guindance the language of „akt notarialny” SHOULD be Polish. While we all know how strong SHOULD meaning is, for polish legal system SHOULD means MUST. However documents signed in a form of „akt notarialny” makes public notary ensures both sides understood the text of the document before putting forward their signatures. This is the place you need a translator. It would be good to have translator specialized in work with public notaries. Bear in mind you will not sign „akt notarialny” in English or any other language nor get a translated copy of any legal signifficance. It is also important that public notary is insurred in case of any mistakes from his side, however I’ve never got a chance to verify how it works.
There is a cap for public notary charges. It may change every year. Bear in mind this charges are negoatiable and the very one reason this is the first article on my blog written in English is that expats always pay the maximum charge. I wouldn’t call it a part of polish legendary hospitality. You should straight away ask for a discount of 20%.
What you pay to notary is a bit confusing. First you pay notary fee for his service. Add to it 23% VAT. Then you pay notary fee for every page of document extract. This is very misleading. The maximum charge here is 6 zł per every started page + 23% VAT. In my archive I have old documents with 2000 characters per page. Now the charakter size and line spacing is additional business for notaries. Especially development agreements are long and cost you a lot for copies. My longest „akt notarialny” is 75 page long. Typically you should prepare for 25-30 pages if you buy from a developer and 10-12 pages if you buy from the market.
Additionally public notary is obliged to ask you for 2% PCC (tax on civil transactions) if you buy from the market. You also pay for each entry in Property Registry.
Public notary maximum charges in 2018:
|Property price||Maximum chargé|
|up 3,000 zł||100 zł|
|between 3,000 zł and 10,000 zł||100 zł + 3% for everything above 3,000 zł|
|between 10,000 zł and 30,000 zł||310 zł + 2% for everything above 10,000 zł|
|between 30,000 zł and 60,000 zł||710 zł + 1% for everything above 30,000 zł|
|between 60,000 zł and 1,000,000 zł||1,010 zł + 0,4% for everything above 60,000 zł|
|between 1,000 ,000 zł and 2,000,000 zł||4,770 zł + 0,2% for everything above 1,000,000 zł|
|above 2,000,000 zł||6,770 zł + 0,25% for everything above 2 000 000 zł, no more than 10,000 zł|
Are you a foreigner?
Public notary also verifies your foreigner status. In polish law A FOREIGNER is either a person with non-polish passport or a company with more than 50% shares in non-polish hands. Some types of properties require special procedures to be bought by foreigners. For identification purposes you use your passport.
How to address public notary in Polish?
You can call public notary „notariusz” or „rejent”. So addressing a male you call „Panie notariuszu” or „Panie rejencie”, while doing the same for a female „Pani notariusz” or „Pani rejent”.
In the end – something nice
Please be aware, that public notary is a kind of clerk. He/she is obliged to serve you explanations of legal side of what you plan to do FREE OF CHARGE.
If you look for a notary in Poland or would like to ask for assistance during your „akt notarialny” – please let me know. This is one of my service I am glad to provide.
Source of picture: bixabay.com