David Everett Marko is a Florida Civil Law Notary and a member in good standing of the National Association of Civil Law Notaries. Not to be confused with a “notary public,” a Florida Civil Law Notary is an attorney appointed by the Florida Secretary of State to issue authentic acts and thereby may authenticate or certify any document, transaction, event, condition or occurrence, the contents of which are presumed correct as a matter of law. Any such authentic act is legally equivalent to the authentic acts of all civil law notaries in all jurisdictions outside the geographic borders of the United States. Florida is the only state in the United States that authorizes certain specially trained lawyers to perform these functions. Therefore, there are currently less than 200 duly appointed civil law notaries authorized to practice in the United States.
Civil law notaries are lawyers who, in non-contentious private civil matters, draft, take, and record legal instruments for private parties, provide legal advice and give attendance in person, and are vested as public officers with the authentication power of the State. They are universally relied upon in many civil law countries for use in transactions, giving authenticity and credibility consistent with the expectations of parties accustomed to the use of “notarios” or “escribanos” in Latin America, Europe, and Asia. Given presumption of correctness of notarial acts under Florida law, the use of a Florida civil law notary is a valuable tool for U.S. matters within the common law system, as well.