The UCL Laws Notarial Practice course is designed to enable legally qualified applicants to fulfil the professional stage of the three stages to becoming a Notary Public
A Notary Public is a legal officer of ancient standing. The functions of Notaries include the preparation and execution of legal documents for use abroad, attesting the authenticity of deeds and writings, and protesting bills of exchange. Notaries in England and Wales may also provide any non-contentious legal service, including Conveyancing and Probate activities.
Notaries are admitted and regulated in England and Wales by The Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
The process of qualification and appointment as a Notary consists of three stages:
- Academic Training
Before commencing the Notarial Practice Course, applicants must hold a valid certificate issued by the Faculty Office exempting them from all 8 modules which comprise the ‘Academic’ stage of training. Applicants will not be able to commence the Notarial Practice Course until a Certificate of Exemption has been granted, although the provider may give a place to an applicant conditional upon obtaining a Certificate of Exemption.
- Professional Training
This is a two-year distance learning course, run on the Faculty Office’s behalf by an academic provider, to train candidates in Notarial Practice. The academic provider for the Notarial Practice Course is currently University College, London (UCL).
Upon successful completion of the Notarial Practice Course applicants will need to apply to the Faculty Office for appointment as a Notary and admission to the Roll of Notaries.
£8,500 for the full two-year course. The fees are split into 4 payments over the two-years. If individuals are self-financing their course fees then it will be possible to split each year's fees into 10 x monthly instalments.
- Applying for your Certificate of Exemption
Since applicants cannot commence the Notarial Practice Course until a Certificate of Exemption has been granted, all applicants are encouraged to apply for a Certificate at the earliest possible opportunity.
The Certificate is the single entry requirement for the course and you will need to make an application to the the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Information about Notaries, including a full information pack on the qualification requirements, appointment procedures and the application form for the Certificate of Exemption from the academic stage of qualification required prior to enrolment on the postgraduate stage of training, is available from the Faculty Office of the Archbishop of Canterbury website.
- About the UCL Notarial Course structure
The course is normally completed within two years on a part-time basis, starting in late September of each year, and includes three modules of study:
Year 1 – September to December
Roman Law as an Introduction to Modern Civil Law Systems (“Roman Law”)
Year 1 – January to March
Private International Law
Year 2 – September to March
The majority of the course is delivered through electronic learning, which allows you to study at home or in the workplace. Your learning is also supported by an introductory workshop and four intensive one-day workshops over the two years of the course. These workshops are held on Saturdays at UCL Laws.
Throughout the course, you will have access to UCL’s Virtual Learning Environment (Moodle), where you can find information about your weekly learning schedules, written assignments, interactive activities, and links to recommended reading and other study materials held on within UCL’s digital library collections.
We estimate that the time commitment to studying for this course is around 10-12 hours per week.
You will be assessed by written examinations, taken at the end of each module.
- Course Brochure
Download the course brochure here
- Open Day - 27 November 2021
Join the Virtual Open Day on Saturday 27 November 2021
Tickets cost £10 and you can book at:
The open day will be held on Zoom and will include presentations from the Faculty Office, UCL, the Notaries Society and from a newly qualified Notary.
Alternatively you can watch the recordings from the open day held in November 2019
- Applying and fees
How to apply
During the lockdown period UCL is not accepting paper application. Please make your application using the online form below. We will contact you for any other necessary documents, and will contact the Faculty Office for a copy of your Certificate of Exemption.
APPLICATIONS FOR ENTRY SEPTEMBER 2022 - application dealine = Friday 22 July 2022.
Online Application Form
Course fees for 2022-24 (including examination fees):
£500 Course deposit
£1875 Roman Law
£1875 Private International Law
£4,250 Notarial Practice Course
The fees for year 2 are payable in two instalments (Sept / Jan)
UCL graduates receive a 15% discount on the fees.
- Where to find more information about the profession
The Notaries Society has published two useful leaflets on becoming a Notary, intended for law graduates and for legal practitioners:
Becoming a Notary – An alternative legal career: A guide for law graduates
Becoming a Notary – A complementary legal career: A guide for legal practitioners