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David performed Ireland's first ever eNotarial act in February 2010, and for years encouraged others to acquire and utilise the special skills of the eNotary. He was among a small group foremost in the movement to introduce and encourage eNotarial services in Ireland and which in particular, was engaged in dialogue with relevant government agencies. Regrettably, with the failure of many nation states, including Ireland, to adopt the eApostille, as yet, the eNotarial concept has enjoyed very limited application, but we live in hope.

eNotary

The electronic documents legislation

An eNotary is a Notary Public who publishes notarised documents electronically. Where, as is most commonly the case, what is being notarised is the signing of the document, that is effected exactly as it always has been, by the individual signing in the sight and presence of the Notary, no exceptions, and the finished document is then securely digitised so that it can be published electronically. eNotarial process does not at all evade or avoid all the strict and secure requirements for peresonal attendance that have always been essential when notarising signatures. Digitisation by eNotaries commonly utilises a visible digital signature looking just like the conventional Notarial signature, stamp and seal. The published eNotarised digital document usually consists of a standard PDF document that has several layers of authentication added, first among which is that strong visible digital signature. This involves a personalised fob (looking for all the world like a memory stick) one of the many licencees of Adobe Corporation worldwide) containing a highly secure password known only to the eNotary in question, who in turn has been validated, not only by Adobe though its worldwide network, but also by the Chief Justice of Ireland of the Supreme Court Office in Dublin. This maintains and even enhances the integrity of the process. The potential need for electronic eNotarisation is growing, spurred on by, of all things, Covid. In time it is hoped that the Department of Foreign Affairs will issue the e-Apostille as the digitised version of the conventional Apostille. This will take the form of an electronic appendix (technically, an "allonge") to the eNotarial PDF file, and forms part of the file. Put together, the new eNotarial act bearing the eApostille will be quicker, cheaper and easier than what we have been used to for millennia. At that point it is anticipated that the demand will expand exponentially for the eNotarial Act and eApostille, and there will be no going back.


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The electronic Apostille | e-Apostille

New Zealand was the first country to issue e-Apostille. In Europe it was The Superior Court of Murcia (Spain) who issued the first electronic Apostille (e-Apostille) in 1998. This Apostille, issued within the framework of an international adoption procedure, is perfectly consistent with the model proposed under the e-APP (Electronic Apostille Pilot Program).

First and easiest step in the introduction of the e-Apostille in any country is the e-Register of Apostilles allowing anyone anywhere to verify on line that an Apostille is genuine.


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eNotary in Ireland

David performed Ireland's first ever eNotarial act in February 2010, and for years encouraged others to acquire and utilise the special skills of the eNotary. He is among a small group foremost in the movement to introduce and encourage eNotarial services in Ireland and which in particular, was engaged in dialogue with relevant government agencies. Regrettably, with the failure of many nation states, including Ireland, to adopt the eApostille, the eNotarial concept has enjoyed very limited application, but we live in hope.


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Issues

The main subjects of electronic Apostille Pilot Program are: What is a digital signature? How does a Competent Authority use a digital certificate to sign e-Apostilles? How does the recipient of an e-Apostille verify its origin, including the current status of a Competent Authority's digital certificate?