The Hague Convention
An Apostille Certificate issued by the Australian Government replaces the more expensive and cumbersome procedure of full Embassy or Consulate document legalisation.
It fast tracks the acceptance of Australian public documents for use in foreign countries.
Apostille is a Certificate issued by a government of a country, authenticating the signature and | or seal of a public official on a public document intended for use in another country.
It is commonly referred to in English as the legalisation of a public document for international use, in accordance with the terms of the “1961 Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents.”
Public documents, including documents notarised by a Notary Public, which have been affixed or attached with an Apostille Certificate by the Australian Government, will be automatically accepted for legal use in foreign countries which are signatories to the Hague Convention.
The Australian Government ratified the Hague Convention on 9th August, 1994 and commenced issuing Apostille Certificates on the 16th March, 1995.
Many countries have still to adopt the Hague Apostille Convention, and those that have not insist on full document legalisation of Australian public documents at their Embassies or Consulates located in Australia or sometimes outside Australia.
There are approximately thirty (30) foreign countries that do not have Embassies or Consulates in Australia. Most of those countries have made arrangements with other countries represented here to assist them with the legalisation of Australian public documents required for use in their countries; otherwise, their Embassies or Consulates located in nearby countries assist.
As at 1st January, 2009, the following countries have agreed to participate in “The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents”…
An Apostille Certificate is sufficient if your Australian public document is required to operate in any of the above participating Hague Convention countries.
Countries not appearing on this list require documents to be legalised by their Embassies or Consulates in Australia or elsewhere.