La palabra del día: Fehaciente/s

Adjective. This word is very common in Legal Spanish and it does not have a direct translation into English. It can be translated into ‘reliable, authentic’, but it means much more than that. The RAE defines it as que hace fe, fidedigno. I think this needs a deeper explanation. As you can see, there are two words here: fe (faith), haciente (making): faith-making. My partner David is here telling me that in English ‘faith-making’ means nothing and I trust him because he is English and a journalist. But, in Spanish it means a lot: Que hace fe means something like ‘that it proofs that what it declares is trustworthy’. For example: un documento fehaciente. But the problem does not finish here; this adjective is often used in the expression de forma fehaciente, or more often we use the adverb fehacientemente. That means that what is done it is done in a way that it can be proven. The perfect example is the expression notificación fehaciente, or notificado fehacientemente; this means that the notification is made in a way that who makes it can pove they made it. Does this make any sense? I will give you a real text here: El ejercicio de este derecho deberá hacerse mediante notificación fehaciente que habrá de recibirse en el domicilio social: In order to exercise this right, the shareholder or shareholders shall provide due verifiable notification sent to the registered offices of the Company.
In another note and speaking about faith, dar fe means ‘to attest’. I think it all makes sense now. A student has told me that the best translation of fehaciente could be ‘verifiable’, and I kind of agree. dc

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