Notaries available for dialogue with government on changing the Order’s status

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The Order of notaries (ON) said today that it was available for dialogue with the government on the modification of the statutes of professional associations and “committed to improving it” in defense of public service.

In a statement, the ON said it was “fully prepared to work with the government to develop a solution that delivers more and better services to citizens and businesses”.

“The bill presented is a starting point for dialogue and a basis for achieving a law that protects the intrinsically public nature of our functions,” said the president of the Order of Notaries, Jorge Batista da Silva, quoted in the statement.

The notaries’ concern is “to ensure the existence of a notary’s office in every municipality of the country and to prevent the populations of these regions from losing notarial services and the impartial nature of the function from being replaced by the commercialization of the activity”.

The statutes of professional associations are currently being revised following the amendment of the law governing these institutions, some of which have already spoken out against the changes.

On Thursday, the Bar Association announced that it would fight and use “all means at its disposal”, namely “stopping the courts”, to protest against the government’s proposed amendment to the statutes, which it considers a violation of the principles of the rule of law.

“All the means at our disposal will be used by the Portuguese Bar Association (OA) and we will stop justice if necessary”, Fernanda de Almeida Pinheiro told the Lusa news agency, saying they would demonstrate against “anything that violates respect for people’s rights, freedoms and guarantees”.

Deeming the proposal “unacceptable”, OA called on “the legal profession to join this fight to defend the democratic rule of law, the rights, freedoms and guarantees of individuals, and the dignity of the profession”.

A week ago, the president of the Portuguese Medical Association (OM), Carlos Cortes, also expressed concern about the government’s proposal for new statutes, stating that “the mission and role of the profession could be at stake” and admitting possible countermeasures.

Lawyers to use “all available means” against government proposal

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