On December 11, 2013, Alberta Bill 44: Notaries and
Commissioners Act, received royal assent. The Bill which will
come into force upon proclamation, amends the Alberta
Guarantees Acknowledgment Act and in turn, changes Alberta
law as it applies to any guarantee with an individual
The Current Law
Under the current Guarantees Acknowledgment Act, in
order for an individual to give a guarantee the person must appear
before a public notary. The notary must ensure that the person is
aware of the contents of the guarantee and if satisfied, issue a
notary certificate in the prescribed form. The individual guarantee
is not valid if not accompanied by the certificate. The notary
public may charge a maximum of $5 for this service.
The New Law Under Bill 44
Under the new bill, the process is fundamentally the same with 3
A guarantor must now appear and acknowledge before a
lawyer instead of a notary that the person
executed the guarantee. The lawyer must undertake the same process
as the notary to ascertain if the person is aware of the contents
of the guarantee and if satisfied issue a certificate
The lawyer must be "independent" in
that he/she cannot represent or be employed by a person or
corporation who stands to benefit as a result of the guarantee
There is no fee cap on what the lawyer may
charge for this service
What it All Means
The new bill could mean additional costs and delays for an
individual who wishes to become a guarantor.
Under the new bill, individuals who wish to stand as an
guarantor and who do not have counsel, will need to retain an
"independent" lawyer for the purpose of obtaining a
certificate who cannot be the lawyer for the lender.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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The Canadian Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions ("OSFI") recently ruled that a bank cannot promote comprehensive credit insurance ("CCI") within its Canadian branches under the Insurance Business (Banks and Bank Holdings Companies) Regulations (the "Regulations").
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