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I am a fellow U. S. expat living here in Panama. I find myself in need of a notary as I need to sign some official documents in front of one.
Does anyone here have a notary stamp/seal that would be valid in the U. S. for this purpose? Would it matter if your commission was from a State other than my own, of do I have to find someone from my own State? Please reply ASAP if you can help, or know of someone who can!
The only U.S. notary is at the embassy in Panama City. Depending on what you need notarized, a Panamanian notary may suffice. There is one in City Hall here in Boquete and several in David. I have signed documents related to a U.S. home sale in front of a Panamanian notary, and it passed muster.
There is more discussion of this issue in a previous thread. Use the search function.
This is my Last Will and Testament I need to sign. Are you sure it will be OK to use a Panamanian notary?
you should ask your attorney as you do not want an invalid will
where do you claim your residence?
where will your Last Will & Testament be probated?
I'm also setting up a trust for the benefit of my kids, so as I understand it, it will NOT be probated.
My U.S. attorney told me it is fine to have our wills notarized by a Panamanian notary. The notary in Boquete uses a large stamp that she fills in. My attorney said to get a translation of what is on the stamp, which I did. The notary was very thorough. She filled in both her own stamp and my translation. Here is the translation of the stamp:
___________________, Municipal Secretary of Boquete, personal identity card number _____, Notary Public duties conferred by article of the Civil Code
That the signatures that appear in the present document are signed in manuscript by ______________, ___________________ and __________________. Attested on the___, ___________, 2012.
Where can I find this notary? Do I need an appointment? What does she charge?
She is across the street from Romeros in the mayors office. No appointment necessary, and it was $5 a document if I remember correctly.
I am a notary, however, in general US notaries only have jurisdiction to perform notorial acts while physically in the state in which they are comissioned. It is illegal for me to notarize a document here in Panama. If both you and I were in Colorado, where I am comissioned, and the documents were from another state I could still notarize them, even if you are not from that state. If you are anywhere in the US, you can have the docs notarized in any state.
I would try a Panamanian Notario and see if it works. Hopefully you can avoid the trip to PC.
I thought this was so - I'm glad to hear it from an expert.
If your Testament was originated in Panama by a Panamanian attorney I believe it will have to be Notarized AND Registered with the National Registry here in Panama before it can be legal here. We had one done several years ago and the our Panamanian attorney took care of everything. But, however I don't think this testament (Panamanian) will be recognized in the US only here in Panama. Also I don't think a US Testament will be recognized in Panama.
It was done by an American, and it will have NOTHING to do with Panama. It is strictly about my American assets and transferring them to my kids upon my death. I just wanted to know if I needed to travel back to the States to get it notarized, or could I do it here?
If you have assets in Panama they need to be covered somehow.