Duration: 
17 weeks
Location: 

Overview

Gain the pre-eminent qualification for notaries in Australia and New Zealand with Victoria University's Professional Course in Notarial Practice.

Originally designed to meet a legislative requirement in Victoria, the Professional Course in Notarial Practice has become one of the outstanding courses of its kind in the common law world.

The course caters to practising lawyers with an Australian law degree who have at least five years' experience in legal practice. It comprises three days of classes, with additional self-paced modules to be completed over 15 weeks.

On completion, you'll have gained knowledge and practical skills in the following topics:

  • notarial practice in major civil law and common law jurisdictions
  • the work of a notary in Victoria
  • notarial acts in private and public forms
  • professional rights and obligations of a notary
  • comparative law and private international law, as they relate to notarial practice.

The course is presented by the Sir Zelman Cowen Centre – which aims to 'enhance community understanding of the law and deepen the legal profession’s understanding of community issues'.

It is approved by the Victorian Legal Admissions Board (VLAB) and satisfies the requirements of the Public Notaries Act 2001 (Vic) in relation to the education of prospective notaries in Victoria.

Course contents

The Professional Course in Notarial Practice commences with a three day compulsory face-to-face workshop, followed by self-paced study. Assessment will include practical problem solving exercises and the submission of a number of assignments.
 
The Course comprises one unit, Notarial Practice in Theory and Practice, with three modules. The flexible teaching approach has been designed to enable practitioners to readily undertake the Course.

The three modules are:
Module 1 - Applied Notarial Practice
Module 2 - Principles of Notarial PracticeModule 3 - Introduction to Comparative Law and Private International Law

Module 1 - Applied Notarial Practice
This module aims to provide students with an in depth, practical knowledge of the work of Australian notaries including a detailed understanding of notarial acts in public and private forms and instruction in a notary’s rights, obligations and duties. On completion of the module, students will demonstrate ability to draft acts in public and private form and identify practical problems faced in daily practice. The module comprises face-to-face workshops over three days. During the workshops, there will be several practical exercises. Following the workshops, an assessment task will be released to be completed by a specified due date. The tasks relates to a number of key aspects of notarial practice that will be covered during the workshop.
 
Module 2 - Principles of Notarial Practice
This module is aimed at providing students with a theoretical background and understanding of the subjects and issues covered during the Applied Notarial Practice workshop. On completion of the module, students should be able to demonstrate their understanding of the theoretical bases of notarial practice in Australia, the major civil law jurisdictions and in the USA. This module is based on self-paced research. It is expected that, including preparation of an assessment task, the module will be completed in eight weeks.
 
Module 3 - Introduction to Comparative Law and Private International LawThis module is aimed at providing students with an introduction to the civil law and common law legal traditions and to the resolution of conflicts of laws between those traditions. This module is commenced during the workshop and is concluded by self-paced research.

On completion of the module, students should be able to demonstrate their understanding of the laws of a number of the major foreign jurisdictions and their ability to negotiate those laws in practice. It is expected that including the preparation of an assessment task, the module will be completed in eight weeks from the time the assessment tasks are sent to students.

The Professional Course in Notarial Practice provides an in-depth, theoretical and practical knowledge of the work of public notaries in Australia. The course is approved by the Victorian Legal Admission Board as one which satisfies the education requirement of the Public Notaries Act 2001 (Vic).
 
The Course will provide a comprehensive overview of notarial acts in public and private forms. It explores the civil law and common law legal traditions and the resolution of conflicts of laws between those traditions in Australia as well as theoretical bases of notarial practice in other major civil law jurisdictions including the USA. The course also explores a notary’s professional rights, obligations and duties as well as the practical aspects of managing a notarial practice including maintaining documentation and professional standards. 

Course Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of the Course, students should be able to:

  • critically review the theoretical basis of notarial practice and contextualise current notarial practice in contemporary Australia;

  • interact with foreign common law and civil law jurisdictions in relation to matters of international trade and commerce;

  •  assist Australian residents, citizens and entities in conducting their cross-border business and personal affairs;

  • provide creative and ethical solutions to practical and complex problems of notarial practice;

  • communicate clearly and coherently using effective interpersonal skills in professional practice; and

  • understand notarial acts in both public and private forms, and a notary’s professional rights, obligations and duties.

Admission requirements

Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee you entry into this course.

Some courses receive more applications than the number of places available. In this situation we will also assess your education, work and other relevant experience.

Students must hold at least an Australian Bachelor's degree in Law (or equivalent qualification that allows them to practice law in Australia) and have been practising for a minimum of 5 years to qualify for admission into the course.

How to register

For all enquiries, please email cowen.centre@vu.edu.au.

Sir Zelman Cowen Centre
Level 2, City Queen Campus

Registration for the 2019 course is closed.

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