Your guide to POA signing at the Greek Consulate
For many, your dream holiday home in Greece starts by signing a Power of Attorney or Inheritance Acceptance Deed at the Greek Consulate. And for that to happen, you need a professional, qualified, certified, and registered interpreter specialising in legal translations, me. This is because it is illegal to sign a public, legal document in Greek unless you speak and understand legal, complex Greek. In any case, it is never a good idea to put your signature on anything you do not understand. So let me guide you through the process and remove some of that language barrier and red tape, bringing you one step closer to your endless summers in Greece.
Whether you need to sign a POA, a Sworn Declaration or an Affidavit for court evidence, the below process applies. It is important to know and understand the process, and to have the correct words to describe it, to ensure everything runs smoothly, everyone is on the same page, and your job is done successfully.
Embassy vs Consulate
Your appointment will not be at the Greek Embassy, but at the Greek Consulate.
The Consulate deals with this type of administrative, citizens' issues. The Embassy is the diplomatic sector. They are at the same address, but have different entrances and they serve different functions.
Impartiality, integrity and professionalism
I am a professional, qualified, and certified interpreter, registered with the Greek Consulate, specialising in Power of Attorneys for property sales and acquisitions (POA), court evidence and sworn statements. I will enhance communication between all parties involved during the appointment, meaning you and the Consulate officials, accurately, impartially, and fully.
Time requirements and estimates
This type of job requires me to arrive earlier than the appointment time to ensure everything starts on time. We are allowed in only 10 minutes before the appointment time. This is to reduce the number of people in the waiting area. Only the required individuals will be allowed in the building and in the Official's office during the appointment. Please note appointments do not usually last 45'. They last at least one hour or more. They can last up to two hours. There can be a backlog on the day and waiting times vary.
The right preparation
You will be asked to fill in a form in Greek upon arrival which I will help you with. You can find this form online here too and you can fill it in yourself in advance: https://www.mfa.gr/uk/images/stories/services/docs/aitisi_plirex.pdf You can also email it to me to fill in in Greek after you’ve filled it in English. Please ensure you print it and bring it along. You can also email it to the Greek Consulate, filled in, prior to your appointment. Please do not sign or date the form. This needs to be done on the day of your appointment.
The Consulate will also need to have your final, most up to date POA or Sworn Declaration in advance of the appointment, so that the Official can edit the file. Please ensure this is emailed to them in advance. This is very important. You will not be signing the document you email to them, but the edited version that the Consulate produces and prepares on the day and during the appointment. The contents of the POA should not be amended materially by the Consulate. The Consulate inserts the introduction and closing statements into the document from a template. These are standardised clauses.
Interpreter's legal liability
The Consulate official will be editing your POA to include my details. My personal data will be included in your POA as your interpreter on the day and I am required to co-sign the legal document with you as well as take an oath before everyone. This means I will sign every page and the end of the POA, next to your signature. If you decide to book me, please email and inform the Consulate that I will be your interpreter on the day.
Translation vs Interpreting vs Sight Translation
Once we walk into the appointment, I will sight translate from written legal Greek (POA) into spoken/oral legal English in real-time. This task takes energy and requires great attention as it transfers written legal information from one language into oral legal information into another language. Please try to minimise noise during this time and feel free to stop and ask questions if anything isn't clear.
For Consular fees please consult: https://www.mfa.gr/uk/en/services/consular-fees At the time of writing this guidance the published fees for POAs are: Power of Attorney, per sheet €50.00 £42.50, Certified copy of power of attorney, per sheet €10.00 £8.50. The word ‘sheet’ refers to one double-sided page. Please note fees can change anytime. Furthermore, the number of pages may change on the day of your appointment. It’s advisable to have more funds than less. Please note the Consulate has recently started accepting UK Debit Card payments. Please check in advance of your appointment.
Language professional's fees
Overall, this type of appointment requires me to be away from my desk for you for roughly 4-5 hours on the day which include travel time and time spent at the Consulate in addition to the time spent preparing for the appointment. The cost reflects that as well as the accumulated experience in executing the job smoothly without issues, and the legal liability I take by co-signing a public, legal document.
You will not receive an English Power of Attorney written document. If you want to have one for your records, please email me the final, signed Greek Power of Attorney (you can scan the copy you take away with you on the day of your appointment and email it to me) and I will quote you for translating that into English. This is so that you can have a record of what you’ve signed, for future purposes, if you wish.
To receive a quote, please email firstname.lastname@example.org the details of your appointment (date, time, place, duration) and the document you will be signing on the day.
Consulate and Language Professional relationship
Please note the Consulate's fee is paid directly to the Consulate and the Language Professional's fee is paid directly to the Language Professional. Translators and Interpreters do not work for the Consulate, neither are approved by it. They are independent, registered professionals.
I cover all Consulates including Northern Ireland.
Vasiliki is a translator, interpreter, transcreator, blogger, consultant and director of Greek to Me Translations Ltd. She works with English, Greek and French herself and has a team of trusted colleagues who can cover other languages. The offered language services serve mainly the legal, creative, and psychometrics industries.
Vasiliki is a Chartered Linguist, member of the Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL), the Institute of Translation and Interpreting (ITI) and Panhellenic Association of Greek Translators (PEM). She is registered with the Greek Embassy in the United Kingdom as a certified translator and interpreter. She holds a BA in English Language and Linguistics and Masters in Business Translation and Interpreting. She is a Member of Council to CIOL, a University Lecturer in Languages (Translation) at School of Business and Law at London Metropolitan University, a public speaker and writer for industry magazines.
Her mission is to help organisations and individuals achieve their goals through the power of words. Through mentoring, Vasiliki helps aspiring or young translators to overcome self-limiting beliefs, build a business mindset and achieve their highest potential.