With the opening session by Mr Frank Molitor, 2013 CNUE President, and Mr André Michielsens, CNUE President in 2014 presenting the conclusions, the circle was complete. The Europe for Notaries – Notaries for Europe training programme ended officially with the closing conference held on 6 November 2014 in Paris at the Conseil National du Notariat français, the French notariat’s national council. Approximately one hundred participants, including many speakers from the various training seminars, drew preliminary conclusions on the programme and envisaged areas of action for the coming years. This overview has been widely elaborated on and explained in the book published by the CNUE in partnership with the Société de Législation Comparée (Comparative Law Society) entitled “Successions and Matrimonial Property Regimes in Europe: Notarial Solutions” a copy of which was presented to all the participants. This publication can be consulted at the following address:http://www.notaries-of-europe.eu/files/position-papers/2014/pdf_CNUE-vfinale.pdf.
Ms Cretin-Magand, who is in charge of European judicial training at the Commission, congratulated the CNUE for the results obtained: 13 seminars organised in ten different countries, almost 2000 participants of 20 nationalities, not forgetting the major conference held in Luxembourg in 2013 as part of the European Day of Civil Justice. Referring to the Commission’saim to enable half of practitioners (i.e. a total of 700,000) to receive training in European law by 2020, Ms Cretin-Magand gave reassurance that the efforts made were going in the right direction. She informed participants that a summary report covering the whole of 2013 would be published by the end of November. The report states that 90,000 professionals received training in 2013, with a total of more than 210,000 in three years.
Notary training has doubled between 2012 and 2014, with 5000 notaries involved. Ms Cretin-Magand observed a snowball effect with the organisation – independently of the CNUE’s programme – of other seminars at national level. However, she called on the CNUE and the national bodies to continue their efforts to raise notaries’ awareness of the new European instruments. In this respect, she said that the new Commissioner in charge of Justice, Ms Jourová, would make training a priority during her mandate and that the budgets for new calls for proposals would be provided for accordingly.
In his conclusion, Mr Michielsens said, “with a construction process of European private international law that recognises the rise in freedom of choice in family law, citizens will expect notaries to provide even better informed advice on European law and the national laws. There is an opportunity here to strengthen our role as advisors of families, advisors accompanying them throughout the most critical points in their lives.
Nevertheless, this will not happen without serious investment on our part. For example, advice cannot be given on the choice of applicable law without knowledge of the laws between which the choice is to be made. Increasingly, we will be obliged to follow developments in private international law and European law. We will also need to know the national laws of the countries of the European Union and beyond. An arduous task, I appreciate that, but not insurmountable. We have a formidable mission before us. The citizens need certainty, legal certainty, and we cannot disappoint their expectations”.
Mr Michielsens also announced that the CNUE was intending to submit a new co-funding application for a training programme covering the 2015-2017 period and would study the various options offered by the Commission’s Erasmus+ programme to set up an international exchange programme for young notaries.