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International Union of Notaries

Union Internationale du Notariat

Last modified: 2023-06-03 by zachary harden
Keywords: international union of notaries | notaries | international organizations |
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The UINL (Union Internationale du Notariat, International Union of Notaries) is a non-governmental organisation established to promote, co-ordinate and develop the duties and activities of Notaries throughout the world and ensure the standing and independence necessary for optimum service to individuals and society through close collaboration between Chambers of Notaries. The IUN represents the spiritual unity and the institution of Latin-type Notaries whose members are lawyers, independent and impartial advisers who, by delegation of public authority, confer authenticity on documents that they prepare, giving a guarantee of legal security and contractual freedom.
It was founded in 1948 by the representatives of the Chambers of Notaries of the following nineteen countries: Argentina, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Chile, Ecuador, France, Italy, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, Switzerland and Uruguay. The original statutes, approved in the form of a "Charter" in October 1948 in what was known as the International Congress of Latin Notaries and idea that emerged mainly from Argentinian Notary José Negri the idea was performed and became reality, with the help of Spanish Notary Rafael Nuñez Lagos. The statutes were officially adopted by the Congress held in Madrid on 21st October 1950. The organization's Spanish name Union Internacional del Notariado Latino references civil law notary which is an interchangeable term with Latin notaries, itself gained its name from Latin-speaking state of Ancient Rome whereas the roots of the civil law notary. Ancient Rome's Codex Justinianus played big part in shaping the laws of civil law countries which originated in Continental Europe and extended to their colonies overseas, including but not limited to Latin America and several Spanish and Portuguese colonies-states which is later known as Latin countries.
The aims of the Union are :
- The promotion and application of the fundamental principles of the Latin-type notarial system, and principles of notarial ethics, as approved by the General Meeting of Member Chambers of Notaries;
- Representation of Chambers of Notaries before international organisations
- Collaboration with and participation in activities of international organisations
- Collaboration with national organizations, more particularly with notarial organizations
- The study of law in the field of notarial practice and collaboration in matters relating to its development, in accordance with the fundamental principles of Latin-type Notaries
- The study and systematic compilation of legislation relating to Notaries
- The promotion of international congresses and support for professional meetings which go beyond purely national interests
- Included amongst the objectives of the Union is the establishment of relationships with:
    Developing Chambers of Notaries and with Notaries in countries which have no notarial organisation to assist their development and organisation with a view to their joining the Union;
    Notarial organisations within legal systems which are eligible to join the notarial system;
    Organisations which are not part of the notarial system in order to collaborate with them in areas of common interest.

Nowadays, several international organisations, such as the UN Economic and Social Council, have conferred to UINL the "special" category of consultative status. This status, defined under article 71 of the Charter of the United Nations and by resolution 1996/31, allows UINL to contribute to the working programmes and objectives of the United Nations, by acting as a technical expert, adviser and consultant to governments, to the Secretariat General, the UN High Commission for Human Rights and within its specialised agencies. As far as the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is concerned, the Union follows its activities to the extent to which it is affected by them;
- international inter governmental organisations, such as the Council of Europe, the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT) and The Hague Conference on Private International Law
- in supranational and regional organisations, such as  the European Union (EU) and its bodies, such as the European Parliament, the European Commission and the Court of Justice of the European Communities; the Organisation of American States (OAS), the Mercado Común del Sur (MERCOSUR), the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Andean Community of Nations, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA),
- in various international non-governmental organisations, such as the International Union of Lawyers (Union internationale des avocats UIA), the International Union of Judges (UIM), the International Law Association (ILA), the International Bar Association (IBA).

The Union Internationale du Notariat was previously known as the Union internationale du Notariat Latin.
The full list of members can be seen (countries in dark grey):
Its main office is the Secrétariat Administratif de l'Union Internationale du Notariat, located in Rome, Italy.

The IUN has also internally several Commissions: they deal with notarial topics from the technical and legal viewpoints. They organise Study Days and Workshops. They are broken down into: Continental commissions:

Intercontinental commissions: It seems (at least) that each continental commission has its own flag, since the CAAm does.
Sources: , and
For additional information go to: UINL (official website).
Esteban Rivera, 16 April 2012 and 4 February 2022

The Flag

The flag was first spotted on March 24, 2012 and can be seen here. (0:27, the flag is the third flag from left to right). The flag is a white horizontal flag featuring the coat of arms in color. There also seems to be a blue flame border on the flag The coat of arms's motto is: "lex est cuodqumque notamus". However there's a variant of the coat of arms, which I spotted on Medellín, Colombia, outside a Notary office affiliated to the UINL.
Esteban Rivera, 16 April 2012 and Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

image by Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

There is a variant flag that uses a simplified logo that is used in Mexico. This simplified logo is placed on a white background, ratio used was 4:7 to match the Mexican national flag.
image by Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

image by Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

There is a variant flag that uses the full coat of arms on a plain white background, without the blue flame border, in Peru. It is also of note the arms are rotated vertically.
image by Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

Coat of arms

image located by Esteban Rivera, 16 April 2012

Variant colored coat of arms of the UINL seen in Medellín, Colombia.
Esteban Rivera
, 16 April 2012

The CoA is a sinister looking eagle inside an oval, with the name (in English) inscribed on the bottom, and inside the oval, on top of the eagle is the motto in Latin "LEX EST QUODCUMQUE NOTAMUS" (English: "The law is what is written"). On top of the eagle, there's a book and a quill symbolizing notaries, and the outer ornaments are an unscrolled paper with a bow on top, in sort of a seal, typical of notarized documents.
Esteban Rivera, 04 February 2022

image located by Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

image located by Zachary Harden, 28 March 2022

Comisión de Asuntos Americanos

Version one; image by Zachary Harden, 17 April 2022

Version two; image by Zachary Harden, 17 April 2022