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The necessity to present important official or court documents to authorities and institutions located outside of Poland requires fulfillment of certain formalities, thanks to which our document will be credible. We are talking here about the Apostille clause and the legalization of documents.

Apostille - what is it?

The Apostille clause is a confirmation of a document, for example a birth or death certificate or a notary deed allowing the use of such documentation in another country. The Apostille certifies that our document is authentic and thanks to it is valid and honored in another country. All issues regarding the Apostille clause are governed by the Hague Convention of October 5, 1961. Apostille is valid in over one hundred countries, including Poland.

Where is the Apostille issued?

The Apostille is issued by the authority of the state in which the person received the document to be certified. In Poland, Apostille clauses are dealt with by the Legalization Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Such a certificate may be a separate document, it may also be a stamp placed on the document.

Apostille procedures - what you need to know?

The first step to getting an Apostille is to fill in the application. The application form can be picked up personally in the Legalization Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or filled in on our website in the ‘FILL IN THE APOSTILLE APPLICATION’ tab. The application must be accompanied by documents to be certified, which should be delivered to our office by courier or in person, and the proof of payment of fee in the amount of PLN 120 (the amount includes the official fee) for each document for which we want to obtain an Apostille clause. For such a certificate it is possible to apply in person or via the agency of our office.

When is the Apostille Clause necessary?

When will we need the Apostille clause? First of all, when documents, such as birth certificates, death certificates, civil registration certificates, notary deeds, diplomas, extracts from registers, court judgments, administrative documents will be necessary to deal with a given matter abroad. Without the Apostille, the above-mentioned documents will not be authentic for the authorities of other countries.

Legalization of documents.

Sometimes, instead of the Apostille certificate, it is necessary to legalize documents for legal transactions outside the borders of a given country. What is such legalization and how is it different from certification?

What is legalization of documents?

Legalization can be defined as the authentication of signatures and stamps of official notaries, judges and officials, which are on documents intended for use outside Poland.