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Apostille and legalization of documents

If you plan to move to another country for permanent residence, want to work officially or go to study, sometimes translating documents is not enough. Some countries require mandatory apostilization and legalization of documents.

What an apostille is and what is it needed for?

Apostille is a special stamp that is placed on official documents and their copies, making them valid on the territory of a state-party to the Hague Convention 1961. This is the simplest procedure for legalization of Ukrainian documents for 112 countries of the world.

Thus, if there is a need to submit Ukrainian documents to official institutions abroad, they should bear the apostille stamp. Before going abroad, it is recommended to translate and affix apostille on all documents that may be needed (documents in the original language are rarely accepted).

GTS 1+1 Translation Agency offers translation and notary certification of apostille translation in Kyiv. We guarantee that all documents we translated for you, with subsequent apostilization and notary certification, will be accepted in all institutions of the country you are going to. All work is done by professionals who consider the specifics of document completion in each country.

Which documents need to be apostille affixed?

Abroad, apostille is required only for documents issued by official authorities. There are 2 categories of such documents:

  • Personal documents. These are: diploma of education, a certificate, a scientific program, an archival certificate, a certificate of residence, a certificate of criminal records, a birth/death certificate, a marriage or divorce certificate. It is also necessary to affix apostille on documents prepared by a notary: a power of attorney, certificate of registration, etc.
  • Legal documents. These are various powers of attorney, registration certificates, articles of association and other documents.

Mind that it is forbidden to affix apostille on work records books, original passports, military tickets, weapons permits, technical data sheets and other documents. It is affixed on a notary certified copy of document only. It is impossible to legalize documents related to financial, commercial or customs activities.

Which state authorities affix apostille?

Those include:

  • Ministry of Justice of Ukraine.
  • Ministry of Education of Ukraine.
  • Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine.

The choice of a specific ministry directly depends on the kind of document you need. For example, if you need to affix apostille on the translation of a criminal records certificate, then you need to contact the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

Which countries require affixing apostille?

The Hague Convention has been in force in Ukraine since December 22, 2003. It was this Convention that cancelled the requirements for consular legalization of documents, which had been in effect since 1961. A similar procedure for legalization of documents applies to all countries participating in the Hague Convention.

This very rule simplified the process of affixing apostille greatly. Now it is enough to affix apostille, translate it and notary certify. The document will be adopted by all state institutions of the country.

Nevertheless, in some countries, a double apostille is required for Ukrainians. This means that the first of them is affixed to the original document or a notary certified copy of the document, after which a translation is made. And the second apostille is affixed on a notary certified translation. There are 8 countries that require a double apostille of documents: France, Austria, Great Britain, Belgium, Switzerland, Portugal, Italy and the Netherlands.

For some types of documents, Italy, Spain and France have made the legalization process even more complicated: document apostilization, accredited translation with a second apostille or with a consular seal.

Regardless of the requirements for apostilization and legalization of documents, GTS 1+1 specialists will carry out a professional translation and legalize the necessary documents.

How long does it take to affix apostille?

The time of affixing apostille directly depends on the type of document it will be affixed on. Standard time of this procedure is:

  • from 5 to 7 business days at the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine;
  • from 1 to 40 business days at the Ministry of Education of Ukraine, depending on the document and the urgency of submission thereof;
  • up to 15 business days at the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine.

We always strive to ensure quick apostille affixing, which is facilitated by well-established legalization process.

Which documents cannot be apostilled?

It is important to understand that there are a number of documents that cannot be apostilled:

  • the text cannot be read due to severe damage;
  • the document is intended for a country that is not a member of the Hague Convention or voted against the accession of Ukraine;
  • the document is signed or written in pencil;
  • the document contains various additions or corrections that do not meet the legislation;
  • the document is not certified with an official seal or does not contain a signature from the rector/vice-rector for educational documents;
  • the signature on the document does not match the information about the name and position of the head of the educational institution.

And these are just some of the reasons why you can be refused to apostilize and legalize documents, thus you need to approach the process responsibly.

Apostilization and legalization of documents together with GTS 1+1

If you wish to translate, affix an apostille or notary certify documents, then GTS 1+1 Translation Agency is your choice. We offer our customers favourable terms of cooperation, to include urgent apostilization and notary certification.

It is not necessary to come to our office to affix an apostille - you can send documents by courier services, which will save time. Our specialists will not only translate and make an apostille, but also help legalize documents in the relevant authorities.

We have experts who specialize in 60 or more languages, so no matter where you decide to go, you can always rely on us. If you want to order services or have additional questions, just call or leave a request on our website.

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