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Structure, Function and Responsibilities

The main functions of the Office of the Notary to Government and Notarial Archives are to provide notarial services to Government and to maintain an archive of notarial records. Functions and responsibilities are laid down in the mission statement and are regulated by the Notarial Profession and Notarial Archives Act (Chapter 55 of the Laws of Malta). The structure of the department is shown in the organisation chart on this website.

The Notarial Section publishes deeds to which the Government, any corporate body established by law or, as may be authorized by the Minister in each case, any partnership or other body in which the Government of Malta or any such body has a controlling interest or over which they have effective control, is a party.  The Notarial Section liaises directly with various Government Departments to give effect to certain government policies and activities.  Prior to proceeding with the publication of a deed,  details are provided and processed in the departmental form of particulars (which is also posted on the Government intranet) which specifies that information being requested is to be used for the drawing up and publication of a public deed to be entered into by the data subject with Government (thereby providing “fair and lawful processing” information to the data subject whose consent is given by his/her signature on the form). 

This Office also processes particulars concerning human resources in the Department according to the Data Protection Act and in conjunction with the regulations and policies set out in the Public Service Management Code. The Department processes as well applications for student notaries to apply to sit for the notarial warrant examination. 

Archival services are provided in accordance with Chapter 55 of the Laws of Malta. The Notarial Archives is a repository for notarial deeds for custody and safe-keeping. In the Archives deeds “inter vivos” and public wills published by notaries public who have practised or are practising in Malta (including deeds received by notaries to Government) are deposited. Original deeds are housed at 2, Mikiel Anton Vassalli Street, Valletta, whereas registers (faithful transcriptions) of same are housed at 24, St. Christopher Street, Valletta, which is a branch of the Maltese Notarial Archives.

Personal data which is recorded in public deeds is accessible to the general public as per Chapter 55.  This means that, being public documents, all deeds are accessible to the public for inspection, provided that the person enquiring about a particular deed or public will specifically indicates the name of the notary and the exact date as to when the deed or will was published.  Legal (authenticated) or informal copies of deeds are issued on request.  In so far as wills are concerned, the death certificate of the testator/testatrix is to be provided if the will was published within the last one hundred years.  If one is already in possession of a death certificate, this can be presented when ordering a copy.  The testator/testatrix or a person authorized by him/her (by virtue of a special power of attorney) may inspect his/her will or request a copy thereof provided that he/she shows his/her identity card.  Customers may call at this Office to order copies of notarial deeds or else they can order by e-mail on the Department’s generic e-mail address (notarial.archives@gov.mt), thereby facilitating access to the Department’s service.  The fees for services provided by the Archives Section are regulated by Part II of the Schedule to Chapter 55 of the Laws of Malta.  

Information about the mission statement and the services provided by this Department is found on this website http://ntg.gov.mt​ (which is under the remit of the Ministry of Justice, Culture and Local Government [MJCL]). Such information is also provided in the Quality Service Charter.

The Office of the Notary to Government and Notarial Archives is fully committed to comply with the requirements and provisions laid down in the Freedom of Information Act (Chapter 496 of the Laws of Malta) which aims to promote greater accountability and transparency in Government. The Freedom of Information Act places obligations on public authorities (including ministries, departments and public sector entities) to provide access to documents held by them, in accordance with and subject to the provisions of the Act.

 
 
Categories of documents held by the Department/Directorate/Entity
 
 
Besides being a repository for notarial deeds (public deeds and wills), which are exempt documents in terms of Article 5(1)(d) of the Freedom of Information Act, the Office of the Notary to Government and Notarial Archives keeps documents under the following broad categories:-
 
  • Administrative files;
  •  Official files in connection with publication of notarial deeds as requested;
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  • Other official files relating to notarial matters, including the notarial warrant examination and researchers applying for reduced fees on services provided by the Notarial Archives;
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  • Annual reports;
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  • Statistics and monthly reports;
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  • Parliamentary Questions files and correspondence;
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  • Performance plans and reports;
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  • Internal memos;
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  • Miscellaneous general correspondence files;
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  • Email correspondence;
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  • Postal record book and register of items sent by hand;
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  • Computer-based data relating to notarial deeds;
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  • Government Gazettes;
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  • Indices of notarial volumes in Archives;
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  • Registers in Archives keeping a daily account of copies of deeds ordered in the Notarial Archives and fees paid;
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  • Registers recording deeds published by the Notaries to Government;
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  • Inventory documentation and file;
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  • Files containing financial information, finance reports, expenditure approval, budget planning;
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  • Payment vouchers, invoices, local purchase orders, receipt books, telephone invoices, quotations and other documents;
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  • Car usage log books;
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  • Cleaning contracts file;
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  • Attendance sheets;
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  • Personal files of employees in the Department;
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  • Vacation leave and sick leave records/certificates;
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  • Performance management plans and PMP forms in connection with personnel;
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  • Staff list;
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  • Customer care correspondence;
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  • Copies of Quality Service Charter;
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  • Data Protection issues and correspondence;
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  • Freedom of information issues and correspondence.
 

Manuals and similar type of documents used for decision making and recommendations
 

Apart from legislation, especially the Notarial Profession and Notarial Archives Act (Chapter 55 of the Laws of Malta) which regulates the notarial profession, the Department holds the following manuals and reference documents for decision making:
 
  • The Public Service Management Code (published by the Office of the Prime Minister) – regarding human resources policies and management. The PSMC brings together in concise form all the standing regulations, circulars, policies on HR management, in the fields of employee relations and resourcing in the Public Service, including family-friendly measures in the public service;
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  • Manual on Staff Development in the Public Service – particularly as regards publication of notarial deeds in connection with officers who undertake sponsored training and serve Government on successful completion thereof;
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  • Directives issued by the Principal Permanent Secretary;
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  • Office Circulars, including OPM Circulars and other Circulars;
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  • Data Protection Policy – outlines the policy followed by the Department in matters related to the processing of personal data it holds in accordance with the Data Protection Act (Chapter 440 of the Laws of Malta), including retention policy;
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  • Freedom of information (FOI) guidelines and procedures in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act (Chapter 496 of the Laws of Malta).​
 
FOI requests
 
Statement of the information that needs to be available to members of the public who wish to obtain access to official documents from the public authority, which statement shall include particulars of the officer or officers to whom requests for such access should be sent to:

Dr. Paul Callus 
Office of the Notary to Government,
2, Mikiel Anton Vassalli Street, 
Valletta VLT 1310
email address: foi.ntg@gov.mt
 
The Alternate FOI Officer (Dr. Hubert Theuma) may also be contacted at the above address.
If an applicant is not satisfied with the way his FOI Request was handled, 
he/she may choose to submit a complaint to the Public Authority within a maximum of 30 days from the date of the last relevant communication by the Public Authority. 
Complaints may be submitted on the FOI Portal by using the E-ID or the online form; or by sending an email.
Working days of Department are Monday to Friday; opening hours are 07.15 to 15.30 all year round.  
Notarial Archives opening hours:  07:30 to 15:00 all year round.​

Information about the mission statement and the services provided by this Department is found on the website http://ntg.gov.mt  It contains information, inter alia, regarding the structure, functions and responsibilities, in accordance with Article 17 of the FOI Act.  The public can inspect notarial deeds (public deeds and wills) and order a copy thereof;  such access is subject to the provisions of the Notarial Profession and Notarial Archives Act (Chapter 55 of the Laws of Malta), which regulates the Notarial Archives. 

Other categories of documents that may be disclosed to the public are accessible in virtue of the FOI Act and are subject to the fees established therein.

Payments of fees in conjunction with an FOI Request can be made either in cash at the Accounts Section of the Public Authority or by cheque payable to the Office of the Notary to Government.​

 Office of the Notary to Government and Notarial Archives
2/3, 
Mikiel Anton Vassalli Street 
Valletta, Malta
VLT 1310
 
 
Telephone

Email
notarial.archives@gov.mt