Federal Law No. 379-FZ “On Amending Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation” (the Amendment Law) introduces a unified notarial information system (the Information System) which is designed to ensure the complex collection and processing of data relating to notarial actions as well as providing all types of information interaction and data exchange.

According to the Amendment Law, the Information System shall keep several electronic registers where Russian notaries will be required to (i) record information about their notarial actions, including details of any power of attorney notarised by such notaries (the Register of Notarial Actions); and (ii) register notifications of pledge agreements over movable assets (the Register of Pledge Notifications).

Certain data recorded in the Information System will be publicly available on the Internet for free. This information includes:

  1. in respect of any power of attorney: information on whether it has been revoked, who and when certified it, its registration number assigned in the Register of Notarial Actions, details of its revocation etc; and
  2. in respect of data contained in the Register of Pledge Notifications: the registration number of any pledge notification assigned in the Register of Pledge Notifications, details of pledge agreements (date, name of the parties, description of pledged movable assets etc) and information about pledgors and pledgees.

The Amendment Law provides a transition period from 1 July 2014 to 1 January 2018 specifying that by 1 January 2018 Russian notaries will have to switch to recording all notarial actions in electronic format on the Information System. At the same time, the amendments relating to recording on the Information System information about notarised powers of attorney and the registration of pledge notifications will come into force on 1 July 2014. Russian notaries will therefore be required to record on the Information System information about all notarised powers of attorney as well as any amendments, terminations or revocations thereof starting from 1 July 2014. This will enable market participants to check whether any notarised power of attorney is valid and has not been revoked.

From 1 July 2014 the parties to a pledge agreement will be able to register pledges of movable assets by way of the registration of relevant pledge notifications in order to make information about those pledges publicly available and to ensure their priority over subsequently registered pledges.

Any pledge notification shall be delivered by (i) either the pledgor or pledgee when the pledge is created; and (ii) by the pledgee when the pledge is amended or the information about that pledge is excluded from the Register of Pledge Notifications. The form of pledge notifications has yet to be determined.