SC suspends abogado, forever bans him from notarial practice over expired authority

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The Supreme Court (SC) has perpetually disqualified abogado Jose Alvarez, Sr., from being commissioned as a notary public after finding him guilty of notarizing documents without the proper authority.

This was on top of the penalty of two years’ suspension from practicing law.

In an 11-page decision, the SC 2nd Division found Alvarez guilty of violating the 2004 Rules on Notarial Practice upon the complaint of Pablito Miranda, Jr.

The SC said Alvarez notarized a joint affidavit in 1993 and a business permit application in 2010, both in San Pedro, Laguna, where his notarial commission was only valid from 1998 to 2005.

Although Alvarez was issued a notarial commission in Biñan City, Laguna, for 2010 to 2011, he still conducted business in San Pedro as shown by the aforementioned business permit application.

In Biñan City, he also notarized an affidavit for death benefit claim despite the expiration of his authority there in 2012.

The SC also noted that the 2010 business permit application lacked any details regarding the identity of the signatory.

Alvarez also failed to forward to the Clerk of Court of the commissioning court a certified copy of each month’s entries and a duplicate original copy of instruments acknowledged before him.

“By flouting the Notarial Rules on numerous occasions, respondent engaged in unlawful conduct,” read the decision penned by Associate Justice Estela Perlas-Bernabe.

Alvarez’s case was worsened by Miranda’s revelation that he practiced law even as his previous suspension in 2001 was never lifted.

The SC directed the abogado to explain why he should not be cited in contempt and sanctioned further for doing so.

Although Alvarez’s suspension was only supposed to last five months, the SC said its lifting was not automatic and the lawyer should still file the necessary motion and certifications that he indeed stopped practicing law.

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