Public Defender Addresses Chamber of Notaries of Georgia with General Proposal regarding Support Institute
On October 25, 2022, the Public Defender of Georgia addressed the Chairman of the Board of the Chamber of Notaries of Georgia with a general proposal and called on him to ensure that notaries correctly understand the concept of capacity and fulfill the standards defined within the framework of the support reform, including by eliminating the discriminatory practice of requesting a medical certificate.
The Public Defender was applied by a person with disability status, who indicated that a notary required him to submit a medical certificate as a prerequisite for engaging in notarial activity. The notary explained her refusal to perform the notarial act by the fact that she doubted the authenticity of the will expressed by the applicant, which was the basis for the termination of the notarial service in accordance with the law. The Chamber of Notaries agreed with the notary's action and considered that the notary's behavior was motivated by the desire to protect the interests of the person with disabilities.
The Public Defender considers that, as the law stipulates that the need of a person to receive support shall be determined on the basis of a court decision, the request by the notary to submit a medical certificate indicates her misunderstanding of the essence of the reform and the existence of practices inciting discrimination. The correct use of the support institute is of immeasurable importance in the process of improving the rights situation of persons with disabilities and their integration into society. Therefore, it is important that notaries, as persons responsible for establishing legal facts and legal relations between persons, do not encourage discriminatory treatment of persons with psychosocial needs when performing notarial activities and thus do not contribute to their exclusion from civil transactions.