What does the apostille certificate look like?

apostille certificateApproximately 15cm square the apostille certificate is always black text on white paper. It is normally fixed to the back of the document to avoid obscuring the document.

It includes up to 10 pieces of information depending on what document the certificate is being attached to.

  1. Country of issue
  2. Who has signed the document (this only applies for documents that have been signed. Some documents do not have signatures. For example birth certificates and court stamped documents).
  3. The capacity in which the person signed the document (see note below)
  4. Details of any seal on the document (not all documents are sealed, see above note)
  5. Place of issue
  6. Date of issue
  7. Issuing authority
  8. Apostille Certificate number
  9. Stamp of issuing authority (the document is embossed)
  10. Signature of representative of issuing authority

Note: Not all documents are signed or sealed. An example of this is a birth certificate. There is no signature or seal/stamp. The apostille is only issued on genuine registry certificates. Therefore sections 2, 3 and 4 will be left blank. This does not invalidate the certificate, it is standard practice under the Hague Convention.