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What is the Hague Apostille?
The Hague Apostille is a certification issued by the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 to authenticate documents which are going to be used within the different Member States. The Hague Apostille verifies the authenticity of the signature, seal or stamp of the issuing authority of the document.
To be valid in a foreign country, certain types of documents must be authenticated by what is known as apostille. An apostille is a certificate that confirms the authenticity of the origin of a document and the fulfilment of all the applicable legal requirements. Documents that usually require an apostille are birth certificates, marriage certificates, death certificates or powers of attorney among others.
What documents can be apostilled?
You must take into account that not every document need to be apostilled. It is very common to find clients requesting the apostille of a document when they have not been required to do so. If you have doubts about whether you should apostille your documents or not you can contact us. We will be glad to help!
Types of documents that need the Hague Apostille:
- Judicial documents: In this section are included all documents issued by judges or magistrates in contentious or voluntary jurisdictions, judgments or orders.
- Administrative documents: All the certifications contained on private documents. This section includes documents such as official and notarial authentications.
We must clarify that documents issued by diplomatic or consular officials do not need to be apostilled.
When does the Hague Apostille expire?
This is a very recurrent question when it comes to apostilling a document since an apostilled but expired document is useless. There is no single answer to this question since it will depend on the type of document that is going to be apostilled or the use we are going to give it.
What you must never forget is that the Hague Apostille will be in force as long as the document is so as well. Adding an apostille will no extend the validity period of your document.
Examples of Apostille and their expiration:
- Apostilles that do not expire (because the documents have no date of expire): those accompanying university degrees or other school degrees.
- Apostilles that expire (because the documents have date of expire): Birth, Marriage or Death Certificates generally expire after 3 months.
What to do to obtain your Apostille?
Send the Document to be apostilled
You can deliver your document at our office in Adeje or by courier. In the case of Argentina, Colombia and Venezuela, digital documentation is accepted by e-mail.
Your Apostille is in Process
Once the agreed price has been paid we will proceed to apostille your document, process which usually takes an average of 2 working days.
Apostilled Document Translation (Optional)
If you need, in addition to the apostille, the translation of the apostilled document or certificate you can tell us in the contact form or mail and we will send you a quotation for such translation.
Your Document in your hands
Once the process is finished, we will contact you and send the document to the requested address. In the case of Argentina, Colombia and Venezuela it will be sent by e-mail.
States party to the Hague Convention
To recognise a certified public document this will have to bear the Apostille seal, given by the country where the document was issued, and which takes effect before any authority of a state signatory to the Hague Convention.
The purpose of the Hague Convention is to speed up procedures where public documents are necessary and demanded by other entities.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can request to apostille a document?
To apply for the Hague Apostille of an official document, you need to be the bearer of the document. If you have an official document and you need to translate it and certify its validity with an apostille, you can do so only with the original document.
To request/certify a document, it is only necessary to have the original document in physical format so that the apostille can be annexed to it and let us know the country where you need to use it.
Is it necessary to translate an apostille?
In case you need to present the document in a country where the official language is different from the one use for the document, it will be necessary to make a sworn translation of the document and also of the apostille. We must emphasized that the apostille must be done in the same country where the original document was issued.
How long does it take to apostille a document?
Well, the process is fast. It only takes 24 to 48 hours (1 to 2 working days) to get the Apostille. It will take longer if, in addition, the document also needs to be certified by a Notary Public.