Notarial acts automation refers to the range of semi-automatic or fully-automatic processes that deal with the generation of notarial acts, online notarization, and extracting data from them. In this article, we’ll focus on the latter, showing the capabilities of document automation software in pulling data about properties and purchasing parties. We’ll bring up several reasons why notarial acts automation can be helpful in numerous applications – notary offices, municipality offices, property appraisers, and other institutions that use information extracted from notary acts.
According to a registry called Notaries of Europe, there are slightly less than 49.000 public notaries all over the old continent. Since you’re here, chances are you work in of them. You may also need a hand with automating processes of property appraising or need a quicker way to build databases of appraised properties in municipal offices. Unless you like to read about notarization in your free time.
Whichever is the case, you’re in the right place.
This article will broaden your knowledge about implementing AI and automation software in the legal sector. We’ll cover the following:
- What is data capture (why it’s not some fancy magic, but AI-backed tech)
- How automation assists legal experts
- Which data types can be pulled from notary deeds of transfer ownership
- Where to begin with introducing automation in your practice
Before we move forward with addressing the key points above, let’s look at what notarial acts are. Even if it’s evident to you, always better to be safe than sorry, right?
Notarial acts are legally binding documents that determine facts concerning certain events or details of an agreement. Consequently, we talk about the notarization process, which aims at authenticating all details of the given document. Notarial acts are essential in transferring rights to properties, and that’s the primary example we’ll be using in the latter part of this article.
What is data capture [+ information extracted from notary acts for property rights transfer]
Data capture is an automated process of identifying information fields from documents using OCR and machine learning.
Now, what is OCR?
OCR, short for Optical Character Recognition, aims to mimic the human ability to read and understand text from images. It’s part of a large field of AI technology related to computer vision. While the technology has existed for a few decades, recent advancements brought Artificial Intelligence to open new doors for OCR software.
Today, AI OCR relies on machine learning that pushes the boundaries of text recognition and image-to-text conversion automation.
Modern models perform automated data capture on documents, and they learn to improve over time, reaching nearly 100% of accuracy in many cases. In the case of Alphamoon, we have successfully taught our model to process invoices with similar accuracy. In the case of notarial acts OCR, the software would turn all pages of a single deed into text that contains classified data.
OCR is usually combined with data extraction.
Data extraction refers to another process, automatization, which aims at reducing the manual work of entering information from physical or digital records into computer systems. The usual workflow looks like this:
That workflow fits the notarial act automation use case pretty well. In the case of notary acts, the document must be digitized first (scanned) and then go through the stage of OCR – image-to-text converting. The software recognizes elements of the document – tables, signatures, plain text, headings, texts in bold, and all the other details. We call this the “stage of OCR,” but it happens within seconds.
On to the next step – data extraction.
When you think about it, it’s logical and identical to how the human brain works. The AI model recognizes the contents of the document and then understands it and pulls only those fragments that are relevant to the prompt. Like our brains – we receive data and process it to focus only on what is appropriate to the given task.
Depending on your needs in terms of notarial acts automation (and specificity of notarial deeds in your region), the information extracted from notary acts by the Alphamoon model may include:
- Error list
- Transaction ID
- Voivodeship (specific for Polish notarial deeds)
- Building number
- Geodetic precinct
- map sheet
- lot number
- Plot area [m2]
- Transaction date/Appraisal (evaluation) date
- Net price [zloty]
- Gross price [PLN]
- Seller’s name
- Buyer’s name
- Specific transaction terms/conditions
- Source of information
- Price source
- Registry data source
- Notarial deed number
- The legal status of the property
- Right to perpetual usufruct of land
- Land register number
- Building/construction permit
- Document type
- Designation of land / Zoning of the land (primary function)
- Designation of land / Zoning of the land (additional function)
- Additional information
- Total Usable Area potential [m2]
- Gross Leasable Area potential [m2]
That’s over 40 different pieces of data, pulled in minutes and sent to your database.
By the way, if that sounds like a remedy for your pains, you can create your own account in Alphamoon and test the solution on your documents. The platform works on any document and can extract any information.
Okay, back to the story.
The lesson on document automation 101 is behind us, so now, let’s see the business application.
How document automation assists legal experts
You already know how OCR and data extraction works and what Alphamoon can extract from an exemplary notarial act.
Now, we can move to the way AI assists legal experts in the field of reading documents and pulling data from them.
Intelligent document processing platform assists notary offices with more tasks, including text classification and document-wide search. In fact, this section will help you transform your work accordingly to a digital journey model we have created.
With the right amount of innovation, your company will move like that:
1. Digitizing notarial acts
Scanning documents is the first step in catching up with the Joneses.
By digitizing your documents, you build the foundation for introducing more advanced technologies, such as intelligent document processing. Also, you decrease the chances of damaging your archives due to fires, pest infestation, and paper quality deterioration due to humid environments or mold.
2. Extracting data from notarized documents
The need to extract data from notarial acts can emerge in various offices. Municipalities, which collect information on all properties in the designated area, often need help with updating property ownership data and land details. The deployment of OCR eliminates errors and outdated data issues.
Another significant beneficiary of notarial acts automation is real estate appraisers, who need official registries to build their own databases. The more up-to-date and relevant information is, the more accurate information about properties and land is used in mortgage processing.
Eventually, banks benefit from that improved workflow too. Banks are at the end of the food chain here because selling loans requires credit risk assessment based on the data provided by both municipalities and appraisers. If risk evaluation suffers from inaccurate or fallible data, credit risk increases which might have disastrous effects in the long run.
3. Finding information in digitized documents within seconds
Do you ever wonder how much of a revolution search engine algorithms brought?
We search for information in seconds, and with the developments such as Chat GPT integration with Bing, we’re likely to cut time soon on doing research too.
Alphamoon can help apply the same principle to your documents. With our automation platform, you will find the property number or land size from a particular notarial act in a blink of an eye.
4. Removing the attachment to the paperwork
Fact #1: The legal sector is one that particularly loves tradition.
Fact #2: The legal sector might immediately conjure up images of paperwork lying on a desk.
Something along the lines of this:
Various estimations indicate that the legal sector is among the leading “users” of physical paper. One study from 2008 found that attorneys print 100.000 pages annually. Fifteen years later, not much has changed.
Furthermore, you might have seen how paperwork has been demonized as the main culprit in destroying forests worldwide or how pointless printing every single document is. Indeed, printing every single sheet of paper is excessive – to say the least. Particularly if 45% of that printed paper ends up in the trash by the end of the day. [Research by Record Nations]
However, let’s speak the language of benefits.
Our research indicates that reducing paper in a company hiring 100 employees can yield up to $140.000 in annual savings. Not only that. We also researched how automation helps cut energy consumption by 80%.
Automation assists in making any legal practice more sustainable, cost-effective, and efficient.
5. RON – remote online notarization
Aside from document processing, you may also consider remote online notarization. There are tools such as Notarity that bring together clients and notary offices to an online platform. This may help you tap into a new market or work with individuals who prefer the online way of doing things.
6. E-signatures are the thing of the future
The popularity of e-signatures went through the roof due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tools such as DocuSign help securely sign and authenticate documents.
Where to begin with introducing automation in your practice?
Great, you’re almost ready to finish.
All that tech knowledge cannot go to waste, so the next step is determining how document AI can help you work more efficiently. Be sure to contact us and schedule a call with our experts to discuss notarial acts automation.