On Tuesday, the General Directorate of Legal Security and Public Trust, in coordination with the General Council of Notaries, issued an Instruction dated 15 March 2020 regarding the adoption of measures that guarantee the adequate provision of the public notary service during the state of emergency that has been decreed in Spain as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
This document states that the public notary service is a public service of general interest whose provision must be guaranteed throughout the national territory; with the exception of in cases of illness and other events established in the notarial legislation. Thus, notaries cannot close their notary offices as they are public offices.
Nevertheless, the instruction indicates that, given the restrictions in place due to the state of emergency, it will only be compulsory to attend urgent cases in person, as well as those determined by the Government. Therefore, notaries shall refrain from summoning interested parties for non-urgent cases. Notary offices must provide a contact telephone number and email address for the handling of such cases.
Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake