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Anyone for POLO? When notarial work gets complicated

Notarial work in the Isle of Man can often mean more than just rubber-stamping copy documents. 

As set out on our website, much of our notarial practice at Kinley Legal revolves around certifying documents in the Isle of Man for use abroad. This can include where a legal document is issued by a company in the Isle of Man but needs to be used in another legal jurisdiction. Sometimes, the identity of a person in the Isle of Man needs to be authenticated for an overseas transaction to proceed. 

In certain cases, however, Kinley Legal’s notarial team is required to carry out additional steps to ensure the documents can be used abroad as intended. In this article, we will discuss some of them. 

POLO (Philippine Overseas Labor Office) 

The Isle of Man has had a long association with workers from the Philippines, and just under 1,000 Filipino-born people are estimated to live in the Isle of Man at the moment. 

Recent developments have seen the government of the Philippines impose increased requirements upon Filipino citizens working abroad, and on overseas companies and agencies recruiting and employing Filipino citizens. 

Among the requirements is a requirement for Isle of Man employers to register with the Philippine Overseas Labour Office in order to be permitted to employ a Filipino overseas worker. There are different procedures to be followed, depending on whether the person is to be recruited directly or through employment agencies, whether the employer is a government body or a private entity, or the job is at sea rather than on land. 

POLO registration is a requirement of Filipino law, and is in addition to Isle of Man requirements such as holding a Worker visa or work permit. POLO registration is often a natural step, which is progressed immediately after a new employee receives their Isle of Man visa. 

While Kinley Legal does not of course advise on matters of Filipino law, our notarial team are experienced in preparing the necessary certified documents and then organising the process of submitting them and receiving POLO registration in due course. 

For more information about POLO registration following notarisation, please send an e-mail to notarial@kinleylegal.com or complete our simple contact form, and we would be pleased to help. 

Embassy legalisation and attestation 

Most countries are parties to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents, also known as the Apostille Convention.  

Under the Apostille Convention, a special certification called an apostille may be added to a public document issued in one signatory country, allowing it to be used in another signatory country without further requirements. 

Kinley Legal regularly arranges apostilles to be issued in respect of documents issued by our own notaries public, as well as by other public officials of the Isle of Man. This process is also referred to as legalisation. 

However, some countries are not signatories to the Apostille Convention, and have their own requirements before public documents from the Isle of Man can be used in their jurisdiction. Non-signatory countries include Canada, mainland China, Singapore, and much of Africa and the Middle East. 

Today we will focus on the United Arab Emirates, which include Dubai, Abu Dhabi and other major business centres. The UAE is not a signatory to the Apostille Convention, meaning that before an Isle of Man legal document can be used for any official purposes in the UAE, it must not only be apostilled (legalised) in the Isle of Man, but also formally attested at the Embassy of the UAE in London. 

For instance, a Free Zone Enterprise in Dubai has an Isle of Man-resident director and wishes to open a bank account. The director must sign the board resolution in the Isle of Man in the presence of a notary public, then the document must be apostilled, and then must be attested at the UAE Embassy. Only then will the UAE bank be able to act upon it. 

While Kinley Legal does not advise on the requirements of UAE law, we have several years’ experience of arranging Isle of Man documents so that they are valid for use in the UAE. 

For more information about embassy attestation following notarisation, please send an e-mail to notarial@kinleylegal.com or complete our simple contact form, and we would be pleased to help. 

Foreign language documents 

Kinley Legal regularly sees documents which require notarisation of a signature, but which are not in English. These can include anything from complicated business documents and powers of attorney, to simply parental consent letters to allow a child to travel with the other parent, or to obtain a passport. 

We differ from other notaries in the Isle of Man in that our notaries are multilingual, and can usually certify signatures to documents written in Slavonic and Romance languages, including Polish, Bulgarian, Russian and Spanish. 

Even where a document is not in English or a language we can accept, we can help clients by arranging a suitably-qualified translator, so that we can then certify the document as notaries. 

For more information about foreign language documents, please send an e-mail to notarial@kinleylegal.com or call 640366 to ensure a place at one of our notarial clinics. It is also helpful for our notaries to see your notarial requirements in advance, to ensure we can notarise the documents on the day you visit.