To ensure your documents can be legalised with the apostille they must be certified correctly by a recognised legal official under the Hague apostille convention. With overseas authorities requesting the apostille for different types of documents it can be confusing to know who is able to provide certification. The following is a list of the most common officials and the types of documents they can certify for the apostille process.
As a medical professional doctors can certify documents confirming an individual’s medical history. For example if you are applying for employment visas it is common for the overseas authority to request a medical report confirming you are fit and healthy. Alternatively if you are required to take regular medication and are travelling overseas you may require a letter from the doctor confirming you have been prescribed the particular medication and the reasons you are required to take it. If your document has been correctly certified we can assist with legalising medical documents.
Solicitor or Notary public
Solicitors and Notary Publics can certify a variety of different documents from creating copies of education documents to witnessing an individual sign a power of attorney. The solicitor must add a statement to confirm why they are certifying the document. For example they can certify a copy document to be ‘a true copy of the original’ or if they have witnessed a person sign a document they may certify the document was ‘signed in my presence’. Adding this statement ensures it is correctly certified for the apostille process. Our Solicitor certification and apostille service can be used for legalising copies of many different documents.
Companies House officer
Companies trading overseas often need to provide documents confirming their registration details or structure of the business. This allows them to apply for overseas bank accounts for receiving payments or to register with the local tax authorities. Companies House are able to issue documents confirming information held on their database or issue copies of documents a company has filed. These documents can be certified by an officer at Companies House to confirm the details have been taken from the public records. As the officer is acting on behalf of a government department their signature is sufficient for the apostille legalisation.
HMRC issue different documents relating to corporate entities and private individuals. One of the most common documents we process that has been issued by HMRC is a certificate of residence confirming the company or individuals address and they are registered to pay tax in the UK. This document will often be certified by the issuing HMRC officer. As mentioned above with the Companies house officer the HMRC employee is signing the document on behalf of a government office and their signature is sufficient for the apostille legalisation process.
UK court documents often contain an ink stamp from the court at the time of issue. However on occasion the documents may be signed by a Judge. This is typically the case when a court issues an official copy of a document such as a degree absolute. The signature of the judge is certifying the document has been issued by the court or it is an official copy form their records. Therefore the apostille can be issued based on the certification from the judge.
UK government registrars are responsible maintain a register of all births, marriages and deaths in the UK. At the time of registering one of these events they will issue the original certificate as confirmation the event has been registered on the government database. It is also possible for them to issue a copy of the document which is referred to as a ‘certified copy of an entry’ certificate. As they are responsible for maintaining the records birth, marriage and death certificates which are certified by a registrar or deputy-registrar can be legalised with the apostille.
This list is not exhaustive and is provided to give an overview of the most common types of certification used to gain the apostille certificate for UK documents. If you have a document certified by an official not listed here contact us to check if it is sufficient for the apostille.