Definition of Apostille and State Members of the Agreement.

The documents issued by or to be validated in the countries which took part in the Hague Convention (signed on 5th October  1961), can be affixed with Apostille. The Apostille is a special stamp, certifying the legal effectiveness of the document and of the Official who has set his/her signature on it (certificates, copies etc).

Apostille: State Members that have signed the Hague Convention

Albania, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brunei, Bulgaria, Cape Verde, Colombia, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic,  Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, FYR of Macedonia, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyztan, Latvia, Lesotho, Liberia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niue, Norway, Oman, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, USA, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Venezuela.

Thanks to this agreement, it is not necessary for the citizens of the countries mentioned above to legalize documents at the Diplomatic or Consular Representations of the same countries abroad.

Apostille: Jurisdiction bodies

Every country has a dedicated office appointed to manage the legalization procedure. Here is the complete list for all countries which have signed the Hague Convention.

The Ministry of the Foreign Affairs is responsible for taking care of the legalization of documents in Italy.

Depending on the office that has issued a specific document, the Ministry delegates to the Public Procecutor’s Office at the Courts and the Prefectures in the legalization process.

Public Prosecutor’s Office at the Courts: responsible for legalizing acts signed by Notaries, Chancellor’s Office Functionaries and Sheriff-Officers.

Prefectures: responsible for legalizing documents signed by other Italian Authorities, such as Registry Office Functionaries.

Countries which have not signed the Agreement

PLEASE NOTE: If you need to legalize documents or acts issued by countries which are not part of the Hague Convention, you need to address to the Diplomatic or Consular Representations of the the country where it is necessary to submit the legalized document.

For more information about the countries that are members or only parts, please refer to the official Hague Convention’s website.



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