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Apostille Processes in 10 Different Countries

Exploring the Apostille Processes in 10 Different Countries

This article provides an overview of apostille processes in ten countries, including Germany, Hungary, Poland, Turkey, UAE, Serbia, Czech Republic, Estonia, US, and Singapore. We highlight the crucial role of apostilles in facilitating international document recognition, particularly relevant for lawyers navigating cross-border legal complexities. Understanding apostilles is essential for legal professionals to ensure seamless document acceptance across diverse jurisdictions. Join us in exploring these processes and recognizing the vital importance of apostilles, especially in the legal realm. 

What Is an Apostille? 

An Apostille is a confirmation of the authenticity of a public document, necessitating the submission of the original to the designated agency. It verifies both the signature and the authority of the official who signed the public document. This certificate is issued by a competent authority in a country that is a member of the Hague Apostille Convention. The issuance of a single Apostille certificate by a Competent Authority in the place where the document originates facilitates the use of public documents abroad, replacing the often long and costly Apostille Processes. With more than 125 Contracting Parties, the Apostille Convention is one of the most widely used multilateral agreements in the field of legal cooperation.

So far we have assisted over 400 companies.

Consular Legalization 

On the contrary, countries that are not party to the Convention do not follow its procedures. Consequently, their authentication methods vary, necessitating additional measures such as embassy or consulate legalization for international recognition of documents. 

Explore our online consultancy services tailored to assist you in navigating Apostille processes across 10 countries seamlessly. Gain invaluable insights into the latest regulations and ensure a smooth, compliant entry into the business landscape. Schedule your online meeting today and allow us to expertly guide you through the intricacies of the process, making it efficient and hassle-free amidst the ever-evolving regulatory environment.

Apostille Processes in Germany

All of the Convention’s member states recognise German documents that have been apostille-authenticated in accordance with the 1961 Hague Convention. There is no need for further certification, such as consular legalization.

The issuance of apostilles for public documents in Germany lacks a centralized authority, with different entities responsible depending on the issuing authority of the document.

The apostille processes may differ and typically involves multiple pre-certification stages, with processing times often influenced by the workload of the apostille authorities. Therefore, some documents will take longer than others to be certified.

In Germany, only original documents are allowed to be apostilled, and electronic documents or electronic signatures will not be recognized.

For a document to be apostilled, it must be in good condition with clearly legible seals and signatures, and, in some cases, it must be current, not older than 3 or 6 months.

For more information on the German apostille process, click here: https://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/en/visa-service/konsularisches/urkundenverkehrallgemeines-node/urkundenverkehrteilb-node

Apostille Processes in Hungary

Hungary is also party to the Hague Convention, thus there is no need for additional certifications such as consular legalization. 

In Hungary, the competent authorities for apostilles include:

Document requirements for Apostille in Hungary: 

  • Acquiring the document intended to be apostilled;
  • Confirming the signature on the document through the authorized entity;
  • Issuing apostille on a document by an authorized body;
  • Submitting the document together with the apostille in the host country.

Document requirements that might apply:

  • Ensure that the issuing authority’s original stamp is visibly present on the document, clearly bearing the authority’s name.
  • The document must include both the signature and printed name of the individual who requested the stamp.
  • Additionally, the position or official title of the person affixing the stamp should be clearly indicated.

To find out more about the apostille procedure, check out the official link: https://konzinfo.mfa.gov.hu/en/legalisation-procedure-documents-be-used-abroad

Rely on our expert team, proficient in navigating Apostille processes across 10 countries and proficient in 13 languages. Get in touch with us today, and we’ll provide the assistance you need. For inquiries, please reach out via email at info [@] gurcanpartners.com.

Apostille Processes in Poland 

Competent Authorities in Poland: 

Document requirements for Apostille in Poland 

  • Ensure the document is an original or a certified copy issued by the competent authority.
  • Verify that the document contains all pertinent and accurate information.
  • Confirm the document is in the official language of the issuing country or translated into the official language of the country where the apostille is being sought.
  • The designated competent authority should affix the apostille in accordance with regulations.

To learn more about the apostille processes, please visit the official link: https://www.gov.pl/web/diplomacy/certification-of-documents

Apostille Processes in Turkey

In compliance with the 1961 Hague Convention, documents certified with an apostille and issued in Turkey are accepted throughout all Hague Convention member nations. No other validation, such as legalization by a consulate, is necessary for them.

In Turkey, the authorities responsible for issuing apostilles include the County Commissioner (Kaymakam) or Governor (Valilik), along with the Director of the Committee of Legal Affairs or the local Presidium of the Committee of Legal Affairs.

The process of obtaining an apostille for a document in Turkey may vary depending on the countries involved, but generally, the following steps are involved:

  • Acquiring the document intended to be apostilled;
  • Confirming the signature on the document through the authorized entity;
  • Issuing apostille on a document by an authorized body;
  • Submitting the document together with the apostille in the host country.

To discover more about the apostille processes, take a look at the official link provided: http://www.nilufer.gov.tr/apostil-islemleri

For expert assistance with your process, feel free to reach out to us anytime at: info [@] gurcanpartners.com

Apostille Processes in United Arab Emirates 

For documents intended for countries not under the Hague Convention, like Canada, China, the UAE, and others, embassy attestation is required, whereas the Apostille processes suffices for Hague Convention member nations. For a comprehensive list of countries that accept and utilize apostilles, please refer to the provided link: https://www.hcch.net/en/states/hcch-members

What is consular legalization? 

Consular legalization involves the authentication or certification of a legal document to ensure its recognition and full legal effect in a foreign country. This process is conducted by the diplomatic or consular mission of the country where the document is intended for use.  

The consular legalization process is more intricate, time-consuming, and costly than the apostille procedure. 

Documents from the UAE cannot be legalized through apostille, but only through consular legalization. Consular legalization is required not only for documents issued in the UAE when used in other countries but also for documents from other countries intended for use within the UAE. 

The embassy may decide on the authentication procedure, but it is generally necessary to translate the document into the official language of the destination country before submission.

Delve into the apostille processes by visiting the following link for more insights: https://schmidt-export.com/consular-legalization-and-apostille/consular-legalization-united-arab-emirates

Apostille Processes in Serbia 

In Serbia, the competent authorities responsible for issuing apostilles include: 

  • Courts of first instance
  • Ministry responsible for the administration of justice

Apostille certificates in Serbia are specifically issued by ordinary courts, which have the authority to issue apostilles for public documents originating from authorities within their jurisdiction. The apostille is endorsed by the president of the Municipal Court or a designated judge, accompanied by the court’s official seal.

The procedure for obtaining an apostille in Serbia can vary based on the countries involved, but generally, you would typically go through the following steps:

  • Acquiring the document intended to be apostilled;
  • Confirming the signature on the document through the authorized entity;
  • Issuing apostille on a document by an authorized body;
  • Submitting the document together with the apostille in the host country.

Document requirements that might apply:

  • Ensure the document is an original or a certified copy issued by the competent authority.
  • Verify that the document contains all pertinent and accurate information.
  • Confirm the document is in the official language of the issuing country or translated into the official language of the country where the apostille is being sought.
  • The designated competent authority should affix the apostille in accordance with regulations.

For detailed insights into the apostille processes, please refer to the official link: https://www.mfa.gov.rs/en/citizens/services/document-certification

Apostille Processes in Czech Republic 

In the Czech Republic, there are specific competent authorities authorized to issue apostilles for official documents, including:

Depending on the type of document, you can obtain an apostille from either the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the Ministry of Justice in the Czech Republic.

To obtain an apostille for your documents in the Czech Republic, it’s essential to ensure they meet the necessary criteria.

The following prerequisites may be applicable:

  • Submission of the original hard copy of the document intended for legalization or a certified copy.
  • Completion of the Order Form, available in PDF or Word format.
  • Providing proof of online payment.
  • If you prefer not to collect the documents in person or opt for our shipping service, a prepaid return envelope is required.
  • A prepaid return envelope, if you prefer not to collect the documents in person or opt for our shipping service.

When seeking an apostille for a document in the Czech Republic, the following conditions will usually need to be met:

  • Ensure that the issuing authority’s original stamp is visibly present on the document, clearly bearing the authority’s name.
  • The document must include both the signature and printed name of the individual who requested the stamp.
  • Additionally, the position or official title of the person affixing the stamp should be clearly indicated.

Please bear in mind that acquiring an apostille processes can be time-consuming, therefore it is recommended to plan well ahead if you require document legalization with an apostille for foreign use. 

For further information on the apostille processes, consult the following link provided: https://schmidt-export.com/consular-legalization-and-apostille/apostille-czech-republic

Apostille Processes in Estonia 

Notaries in Estonia are overseen by the Ministry of Justice and appointed as the competent authority for issuing apostilles. The Ministry of Justice cannot issue apostilles, even though it possesses control over the Notaries. The responsibility for maintaining the register described in the Convention has been entrusted to the Chamber of Notaries, following guidelines established by the Minister of Justice.

The procedure for obtaining an apostille processes can differ based on the countries involved, but generally, to secure an apostille for a document in Estonia, you would typically follow these steps:

  • Acquiring the document intended to be apostilled;
  • Confirming the signature on the document through the authorized entity;
  • Issuing apostille on a document by an authorized body;
  • Submitting the document together with the apostille in the host country.

Document requirements that might apply:

  • Ensure that the issuing authority’s original stamp is visibly present on the document, clearly bearing the authority’s name.
  • The document must include both the signature and printed name of the individual who requested the stamp.
  • Additionally, the position or official title of the person affixing the stamp should be clearly indicated.

If you want to learn more about the apostille process, the official link is the resource to consult: https://www.notar.ee/en/teabekeskus/apostille


Feel free to reach out to us through the following contact information:

E-MAIL: info [@] gurcanpartners.com


Apostille Processes in United States of America 

Apostilles Processes serve to authenticate the seals and signatures of officials on public documents, including birth certificates, court orders, or any document issued by a federal agency or certified by a U.S. or foreign consul. This certification ensures the document’s recognition in foreign countries that are part of the 1961 Hague Convention Treaty. Our issuance of apostilles is limited to federal documents intended for use in member countries of the 1961 Hague Convention.

Before submitting documents, it is imperative to adhere to the following steps:

  • Notarize each document before a notary public:
  1. If notarized by a county-commissioned notary, certify the document at the clerk of court and then the secretary of state.
  2. If notarized by a state-commissioned notary, certify the document with the secretary of state. Failure to obtain the correct notarization(s) before submission will result in the inability to process your request.
  • Ensure all seals and signatures are original; copies are acceptable only if they are “true certified copies” from a notary public. Certain documents, such as birth, marriage, and death certificates, divorce decrees, court documents, and federally issued documents, must be certified by the secretary of state.
  • For documents in a foreign language, translation into English by a certified translator and notarization as a true translation are mandatory before submission.

Gain a better understanding of the apostille procedure by visiting the official link: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/records-and-authentications/authenticate-your-document/apostille-requirements.html

Apostille Processes in 10 Different Countries
Apostille Processes in 10 Different Countries

Apostille Processes in Singapore

Singapore is among the 120 countries that recognize and issue apostilles in accordance with the Hague Convention of 1961. 

The issuance of apostilles for documents is within the jurisdiction of the Singapore Academy of Law (SAL). Subsequently, SAL also maintains a record for each recently issued notarial certificate. The documents will be inspected by the authorities to make sure that the signatures, stamps, or seals correspond with their internal records. The document will be legalized by affixing an ´apostille´, in the case that they are authentic.  

The process of obtaining an apostille for a document in Singapore may differ based on the sender and recipient country. However, generally, you must follow these steps:

  • Acquiring the document intended to be apostilled;
  • Confirming the signature on the document through the authorized entity;
  • Issuing apostille on a document by an authorized body;
  • Submitting the document together with the apostille in the host country.

Apostille processes can be lengthy, especially when several documents and many countries are involved. For a streamlined and precise apostille procedure, it is advisable to consult experts well-versed in the necessary To ensure a smooth and accurate apostille process, it is recommended to seek guidance from specialists familiar with the requirements and procedures. Relying on their expertise can prevent delays and errors in obtaining apostilles for documents.

Document requirements that might apply:

  • The document must be either the original or an authorized copy issued by the designated authority
  • All relevant and accurate information should be included in the document 
  • The document must be translated into the official language of the issuing country or translated into the official language of the country where the apostille is requested 
  • Pursuant to the regulations the apostille must be affixed by the designated competent authority 

Uncover additional information about the apostille processes by visiting the official link: https://legalisation.sal.sg/LegalisationInfo

Hilary Agbo 

Sources: 

https://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/en/visa-service/konsularisches/urkundenverkehrallgemeines-node/urkundenverkehrteilb-node

https://konzinfo.mfa.gov.hu/en/legalisation-procedure-documents-be-used-abroad

https://www.gov.pl/web/diplomacy/certification-of-documents

http://www.nilufer.gov.tr/apostil-islemleri 

https://www.mfa.gov.rs/en/citizens/services/document-certification

https://schmidt-export.com/consular-legalization-and-apostille/apostille-czech-republic

https://www.notar.ee/en/teabekeskus/apostille

https://schmidt-export.com/consular-legalization-and-apostille/apostille-czech-republic

https://schmidt-export.com/consular-legalization-and-apostille/consular-legalization-united-arab-emirates

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/records-and-authentications/authenticate-your-document/apostille-requirements.html

https://legalisation.sal.sg/LegalisationInfo