third party is advised that the legal assistance attorney acts on behalf of the client and not as a
representative of either the Coast Guard or U.S. Government. Legal assistance attorneys are
authorized to sign correspondence on Coast Guard letterhead using the title "Legal Assistance
Attorney." Attorney-client relationships shall be carefully guarded, and all correspondence,
files and information received shall be considered and treated as legally privileged and
administratively confidential. Administrative and clerical personnel involved in the delivery
of legal assistance services shall safeguard the confidential nature of client matters. Legal
assistance attorneys, acting in conformity with applicable rules of professional responsibility,
may refuse to accept a client, refuse to establish an attorney-client relationship or terminate
any such relationship at any time while performing legal assistance duties. Upon request,
attorneys taking such action shall provide a brief explanation of the reason for doing so to the
responsible Command Director.
d. Legal Assistance Notaries.
(1) Pursuant to 10 U.S.C. 1044a, the following individuals, including reservists, have the
general powers of notary public and of a consul of the United States in the performance of all
notarial services to be used by any of the individuals listed in subparagraph (2) below.
(a) All judge advocates.
(b) All civilian attorneys employed by the Coast Guard serving as legal assistance attorneys.
(c) Chief Warrant Officers and Petty Officers assigned to a Coast Guard legal office or staff,
serving under the immediate supervision of a legal assistance attorney. "Immediate
supervision" means under the direct guidance or management of another. Immediate
supervision does not require a supervisor to be present at all times when the individual
being supervised is performing assigned duties, nor does it require a performance rating
relationship. However, the supervisor and the person supervised must perform duty in
the same general location.
(d) Commissioned Officers and Petty Officers when designated in writing by the responsible
Command Director of Legal Assistance, acting under the training and supervision of a
legal assistance attorney. Notarial authority for this section is limited to documents
prepared by a legal assistance attorney.
(2) Individuals listed in subparagraph 9.d. (1) above may provide notarial services for the
(a) All members of any of the United States armed forces.
(b) All other individuals eligible for legal assistance under the provisions of 10 U.S.C.
1044a and this Instruction.
(c) All individuals serving with, employed by, or accompanying the armed forces outside the
United States and outside the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin