APOSTILLE clause – what is it, when is it required, who issues it?

APOSTILLE clause – what is it, when is it required, who issues it?
8 Feb 2023

An Apostille is a certificate of the official nature of a state document required for use in a foreign country. The Apostille certifies the signature of the person signing the document, the nature of his actions and the identity of the seal placed on the document.

Thanks to it, Polish official documents can be used in other countries. Polish official documents that have been given the apostille clause are treated as official documents with legal force in other countries. The procedure for assigning an apostille clause is, in effect, proof of the authenticity of a given document.

The provisions regarding the apostille are included in the Hague Convention of October 5, 1961. It is an international agreement concluded by 117 countries.

What documents can be apostilled?

In the European Union, this is regulated by Regulation (EU) 2016/1191 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 2016, which abolished the requirement to provide an apostille for the following documents relating to, among others: to: birth, survival, death, name and surname, marriage, divorce, separation or annulment of marriage, parentage of the child, adoption, place of residence or place of stay, citizenship or lack of entry in the criminal record.

However, documents that are subject to an apostille in the European Union include: certificates, court judgments, certifications, notarial deeds, diplomas, certificates and other public documents. The convention excludes documents such as tax returns, baptism certificates and other non-public documents.

What should you do to obtain an apostille?

Court documents may be provided with an apostille clause only after obtaining certification from the district court. First, you must obtain a certificate of compliance of the document with the original, and then the document must be sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with an application for an apostille.

Please also note that an apostille can only be granted on the original document. Therefore, photocopies are unacceptable.

How to apply for an apostille?

To apply for an apostille, please contact the authority responsible for this type of matters, such as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of a given country or a higher court. The application may be submitted in paper or electronic form.

How much does an apostille cost?

The cost of obtaining an apostille for one document is PLN 60. Payment can be made by bank transfer or cash at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

All necessary information regarding the apostille can also be obtained on the ministry's website:

https://www.gov.pl/web/dyploma...

Image source: https://www.notariamateosytorr...

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