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What is the Apostille Certificate?

What is the apostille certificate?

Apostilles Legalisation

Coddan is here to help you grow your business: helping you negotiate your way through the minefield that can be starting out in business is at the heart of what we do at Coddan. As part of our drive to help you enjoy the excitement and avoid the pitfalls, here we take a brief look at the apostille certificate, something that you may come across in the course of future business dealings outside the UK.

What is an apostille certificate? Put simply an apostille certificate (from the French apostille, or note) is a small certificate that can be attached to a document, enabling it to be recognised legally outside the UK. Once a document has had an apostille certificate attached to it confirming the authenticity of signatures and seals, it can be presented to any country that recognises the Apostille.

The authority receiving the document should then accept the seals or signatures as valid without requesting further evidence or proof, saving your business time, further paperwork and money.

What types of documents can an apostille certificate be attached to?

  • Court documents
  • Administrative documents
  • Notarial acts
  • Official certificates that are placed on documents signed by persons in their private capacity, e.g. recording the registration of a document or the fact that it was in existence on a certain date
  • All educational, non-educational and commercial documents

Which countries accept apostille certificates? Apostille certificates are recognised by many countries across the world including EU members, USA, Russia, India, Hong Kong, Australia, Scandinavia and many former Eastern Bloc states.

What does an apostille certificate contain? It follows a prescribed format and must include the following:

  • Country of issue
  • Identity of the signatory
  • The capacity in which the person signed the document
  • Details of any seal
  • Place of issue
  • Date of issue
  • Issuing authority
  • Apostille certificate number
  • Stamp of issuing authority
  • The signature of the representative of the issuing authority

To sum up, an apostille certificate is designed to help you conduct your business efficiently, which is what we're about at Coddan Ltd.