Covid-19 and the passing of notarial deeds – Update of our E-flash of 24 March 2020

In response to the current situation pursuant to Covid-19, the Royal Federation for Belgian Notaries has issued certain guidelines for the Belgian Notaries.

In order to avoid physical contact and the spreading of the virus as much as possible, Belgian Notaries are only allowed to pass notarial deeds if such deeds are urgent or if the financial consequences would be too substantial should the deed not be passed.

The assessment whether a deed is urgent is done on a case-by-case basis by the notary involved.

However, the Royal Federation has indicated that for companies the urgency of a deed is to be interpreted in a broad manner. Therefore, all operations which have an impact on the assets of the company or have direct economic consequences for the company are considered urgent, without the necessity for companies to motivate the imperative nature of the file. This concerns, amongst others, deeds with respect to capital increases, capital decreases, contributions, (de)mergers, conversions etc. Furthermore, all deeds which are subject to the expiry of a legal term or for which the preparatory documents have already been signed and for which the period of validity is limited (for example the convening of the extraordinary general meeting), are also to be considered urgent and are still to be passed.

The guidelines are currently in place until 5 April 2020 and will be prolonged if necessary.

In the event deeds are passed in accordance with the above-mentioned guidelines, notaries urge, if possible, to grant a special power of attorney to the employees or staff of the notary office, in order to enable them to pass the deed without physical contact with clients.

In the event you have a notary deed planned in the near future, we advise you to contact us or your notary in this respect.