Pursuing the roadmap to simplify the administrative procedure in Vietnam, the Government recently issued Decree 23/2015/ND-CP (“Decree 23”) on 16 February, 2015. Decree 23 regulates, among others, the notarization of signature and transaction.
Signature validation is a procedure whereby a competent authority, as prescribed in Decree 23, validates the signature belonging to a person in a document. Signature validation is a fairly simple procedure, yet certain restrictions should be observed. The competent authority shall not validate a signature in a document of which the content is, among others, (i) contrary to the laws and social ethics; or (ii) an agreement or transaction, except for a power of attorney which (a) has no fee; (b) the authorized representative is not obliged to compensate; and (c) does not involve a transfer of asset ownership and the right to use real estate.
Transaction notarization is a procedure whereby a competent authority, as prescribed in Decree 23, will legally validate and is responsible for (i) the time and place of concluding an agreement; and (ii) civil capacity, free will, and signature of the parties of the agreement. The parties who request a notarization shall be responsible for the content and legality of the agreement.
The competent authorities under Decree 23 include a district level justice department, ward people’s committee, consulate, and notary public. Each authority shall have different scope of validation and notarization. For instance, the district level justice department only deal with transactions or agreements involving movable assets.
Decree No. 23/2015/ND-CP shall take effect from 10 April 2015
By Vietnam Law Insight, LNT & Partners
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