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Notary service

Please read the following section. If you need more information, please write us an email to

The duty of the Notary office held within the structure of a Consulate is to accept acts of legal nature accept wills or final written intentions and ensures the correct treatment of such requests and safe deposit in a dedicated and highly sensitive area and issue copies and extracts of acts when requested.

Notary services are provided only to Italian citizens who are permanently or temporarily abroad in accordance with article 28 of Italian Legislative Decree n. 71/2011.

The most frequent notary services requested at a consular office are:

• Power of Attorney

• Wills

• Public Acts

• Certifications and Authentications


A power of attorney is a unilateral judicial document where a person confers powers upon another person to perform acts on their behalf (for example: sell, buy, administrate, donate, accept a donation, register or deregister a company, request to publish wedding bans etc).

A Power of Attorney can be:

• General: with this document the concerned party confers powers upon a representative who will perform general acts relating to the management of affairs on behalf of the conferrer both in the present and in the future. Power is limited to ordinary administrative acts. A General Power of Attorney will always be valid until such time of revocation.

• Special: with this document the concerned party confers powers upon a representative who will perform one or several clear, express and specific acts relating to the specific management of affairs on behalf of the conferrer. A Special Power of Attorney will automatically become invalid once the specific act or acts are performed.


The Notary Office in a Consulate is entrusted with several duties which assume a legal identity. Amongst these important duties are the issues relating to wills. A notary office has the duty to accept personally produced documents relating to declarations of last wishes from persons who find themselves abroad – last will and testament.

A public will is a written declaration of intentions made by a person in the presence of the notary official and two witnesses.

Contrastingly, where a private will is concerned the role of the notary office is limited to formally receiving the document (the contents of which will remain confidential). The notary official will ensure that the treatment of the closed and sealed document and its deposit in the office is in accordance with the rules and protocols established at law.

A holographic is not required to be drawn up by a notary official as it can be deposited in any place and with any person. Usually this type of will is deposited at the Notary Office anyway as to avoid any possibility of loss or theft and to ensure immediate discharge following the death of the declarant.


A public act is a document issued by an authorised Public Official who attributes public credence to the document in accordance with the articles at law.


The tasks surrounding authentications is usually undertaken by a Consular Official however they may also be undertaken by a Notary Official. Particularly when dealing with:

• CERTIFICATION OF SIGNATURES: where a Public Official attests that a particular document was signed in the presence of the Official who has verified the identity of the person signing;

In order to have a signature certified a person must present themselves to the Notary Office with photo identification and Italian Fiscal Code;

• CERTIFICATIONS OF PHOTOGRAPHS: a document which attests that the photograph corresponds to the declarant. In order to allow the Notary Office to proceed with the certification of a photo it is necessary for the person to be physically present together with photo identification and three identical photos.


As of 01.01.2012, in accordance with article 15 of Italian Law 183/2011, authentications issued by an Italian Public Administrative authority that provides information through statements of fact, personal particulars and incidents relating to an Italian citizen are valid only when they are utilised in dealings between private parties. In dealings with an Italian Public Administrative authority or an Italian public official, a statutory declaration in substitution of an affidavit (atto di notorieta’) must be used in accordance with articles 46 and 47 of D.P.R. 445/2000.


A declaration substituting a certificate is a document that is signed by the declarant and produced in substitution of a certificate issued by an Italian Public Administration office (article 46 D.P.R 445/2000).

The following certificates which report personal particulars and statements of fact can be provided by way of sworn declaration in substitution of a certificate:

• date and place of birth;

• place of residence;

• citizenship;

• political rights;

• civil status – single, married or widow;

• statement of family situation;

• life existence;

• birth of a child;

• death of spouse, an ancestor or a descendant;

• military service position and obligations;

• registration in registers or lists held by a Public Administration office;

• level of education;

• professional qualifications;

• completed university or public administration examinations;

• areas of specialisation or expertise;

• positions of responsibility;

• acquired training;

• professional development;

• technical qualifications;

• income and asset position or financial position, especially for the concession of benefits or advantages of all types which are provided by special laws;

• specific abolishment from the obligation to contribute, indicating the amount;

• tax file number (fiscal code) or business number (In Australia – Australian Business Number – ABN);

• any detail from the taxation register;

• occupation;

• type of pensioner and category of pension;

• type of student;

• type of home person;

• type of legal representative of physical people or entity, as a guardian, as a curator or similar;

• registered member of associations or movements of social character of any type;

• fulfilment or non-fulfilment of military obligations included those in article 77 of D.P.R. n. 237/64 modified by article 22 of Italian Law 958/86;

• absence of criminal convictions;

• type of dependants;

• all details which are of the direct knowledge of the declarant which are held in the registers of the civil registry office.

A sworn declaration in substitution of a certificate drawn up by the declarant can be either written or typed. It would need to bare a date and signature and can be provided to an Italian Public Administration office by fax, mail or electronic post together with a photocopy of the declarants photo identification.

The act of signing the document is deemed that the declarant assumes all responsibility in accordance to article 76 D.P.R. 445/2000.


An affidavit will report statements of fact and personal particulars of direct knowledge of the declarant. In accordance with article 47 of D.P.R 445/2000 this information can be provided in a declaration in lieu of affidavits.

The declaration can also relate to statements of fact and personal particulars of third parties, where the declarant attests to the authenticity of an original publication based on direct knowledge.

A declaration can be made in the presence of a public officer with powers to receive such declarations. These include: a notary public, chancellor, municipal official or other officer delegated by the Mayor, signed by the declarant and presented together with a photocopy of the declaration and photo identification of the declarant.

Validity of declarations substituting ordinary certificates and in lieu of affidavits

The substituting declarations have the same validity of the acts they substitute.

Certificates that provide statements of fact, personal particulars and incidents that are not subjected to modification (certificates of birth and death, graduation certificates etc) have unlimited validity.

The remaining certificates have a validity of six months from the date they have been issued, except where legislation or special rulings extend the validity. The validity of registry and civil registry certificates can be extended only if the interested person declares that the details of particulars contained in the certificate have not been subject to modification and the declaration is signed.

Circumstances where a substituting declaration is NOT permitted:

The possibility to substitute certificates with declarations listed below is unlawful.

  •          Medical Certificates;
  •          Health Certificates;
  •          Veterinary Certificates;
  •          Certificates of Origin;
  •          European Union Compliance Certificates;
  •          Trademarks and Patents.

Sanctions for citizens who do not provide true and correct declarations

It is the duty of the receiving office of the Italian Public Administration to expedite, even randomly, verification procedures to protect the integrity of any aspect of a Declaration in Lieu of an Affidavit, particularly in circumstances where serious doubts emerge that question the overall authenticity of the declaration.