OUR SERVICES AS CIVIL LAW NOTARIES IN COLOGNE

Welcome to our English section. In the following, we would like to briefly present you our most important areas of service.

We provide counselling in your language and take over contractual design and arrangements within all the areas of the so-called “preventive justice”.

Examples of typical services we offer are:

Real estate:

  • Sale of apartments, houses, and properties
  • Encumbrance of real property with charges, usufruct, and easements
  • Division of property into condominiums

Companies:

  • Comprehensive counselling for company founders
  • Formation of limited liability companies (GmbH) and entrepreneurial companies – limited liability (UG - haftungsbeschränkt), sale of shares in limited liability companies or entrepreneurial companies, formation of public limited companies (AG), European companies (SE), cooperatives (eG), etc.
  • Counselling and support for company successions

Successions1

  • Counselling for planning successions (including the appointment of a legal guardian and executor of the will)
  • Authentication of wills and agreements as to succession
  • Settlement of the inheritance (application of certificates of inheritance, executorship, etc., and in the future: European Certificate of Succession)
  • Sharing-out of the estate (among co-heirs, legatees, etc.)

Donations:

  • Granting real property, shares in companies and other assets – with or without reservations of usufruct or a contractual claim for the right of return, etc.

Family2:

  • Marriage contracts and civil partnership contracts, containing provisions for parental custody, financial relations between the spouses (so-called matrimonial property regime), maintenance, pension entitlements (so-called balancing of future pensions), etc.
  • Contractual regulations for partnerships outside of marriage or registered civil partnership
  • Adoptions

Prevention3:

  • General powers of attorney
  • Lasting/preventive powers of attorney
  • Disposals of custodianship
  • Living wills

Dispute settlement:

  • Dispute-avoiding mediation, especially in family and succession matters (e.g. in the context of the sharing-out of the estate)

 

The function of civil law notaries in Germany

In Germany, we are independent holders of a public office. As such and unlike a notary public in common law countries (e.g. in the UK or in the US), we are by law entrusted with all the fields of preventive justice, where we exercise preemptive legal control and establish authentic instruments which have binding evidentiary effects vis-à-vis the courts and which are immediately enforceable.

Impartial and confidential. As impartial legal counsellors, the civil law notaries Dr. Neuhaus and Dr. Buschbaum in Cologne offer their services to you and your contracting partners, especially, but not exclusively for complicated legal acts with far-reaching consequences. In all matters we are obliged to maintain confidentiality towards any third parties and also to make this confidentiality a duty for our employees.

Secure and modern. The notarial authentic instrument is the embodiment of legal certainty. The trust that it enjoys in any legal relations has its origin in the notaries’ diligence. Moreover, as civil law notaries, we play a leading role in electronic legal transactions. By now the trust placed in qualified electronic signatures with a notarial attribute equals that of our personal signature with the notarial seal.

Predictable and reasonably priced. Only the statutory fees and expenses are applicable for our services – not more and not less. Regular business examinations carried out by the President of the Regional Court (Landgericht) also cover the proper charging of fees. The notarial scale of fees is based on the object value of the transaction. This has the advantage that all our services are included in the authentication fees, including drafts – regardless of the difficulty or complexity of the subject matter, the effort or the number of appointments for counselling.

International and networked. As civil law notaries in Cologne we offer counselling and authentication not only in purely domestic German constellations, but also in cross-border cases (e.g. foreign nationality, residence abroad, property abroad). For this purpose, we are not only proficient in English, French and Spanish, but we also have the competent contact partners abroad.

 

The special legal effects of the authentic instruments we create (high evidentiary effects before the courts, immediate enforceability of the claims they contain) are valid in Germany, but equally in European countries outside Germany, due to court practice and a number of legal acts of the European Union: an example is the Succession Regulation, applicable for all deaths from 17. August 2015. For the first time, under certain conditions, this Regulation allows for a choice of the national law of succession applicable.




1 For more detailed information see www.successions-europe.eu.

2 For more detailed information see www.couples-europe.eu.

3 For more detailed information see www.vulnerable-adults-europe.eu/?lang=en.