Authentication of documents
The Consular Services Section of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has responsibility for the Authentication of documents.

Introduction

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade can Authenticate\Apostille documents executed in Ireland that are to be used in other countries.   Irish Diplomatic and Consular Missions abroad  can legalise documents executed abroad for use in Ireland.

Authenticating a document simply means confirming that a signature, seal or stamp appearing on the document is genuine.  Legalising a document means authenticating it for the purpose of making it acceptable to an Irish court.

Authentication and Legalisation do not mean that the content of a document is accurate or that the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade approves of the content.

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Why do documents need to be Authenticated\Apostilled?

If you are going to use Irish documents overseas, for business or personal reasons, you may be asked to have your documents Authenticated\Apostilled by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. You should therefore confirm with the authority to whom you are presenting the documents what their requirements are with regard to Authentication\Legalisation.

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What is an Apostille?

The 1961 Hague Convention abolished the requirement for Foreign Public Documents (e.g. birth, death and marriage certificates, documents issued by a Notary Public) to be legalised for countries that are parties to the Convention. The Convention entered into force for Ireland on 9 March 1999. For further information on the Hague Convention please access their website.

However, countries that are parties to the Convention may request the bearer of a document issued by a public authority to obtain an Apostille from the Authorities of the country that issued the document.

An Apostille involves the addition of a certificate, either stamped on the document itself or attached to it. It certifies the country of origin of the document, the identity and capacity in which the document has been signed and the name of any authority which has affixed a seal or stamp to the document.

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Documents we can Authenticate\Apostille

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade can Authenticate\Apostille documents of Irish origin provided that they bear an original signature, seal or stamp from an Irish practising public official or organisation. An Irish document means that it originated or has been executed in Ireland. If a practising Irish solicitor, Notary Public or Commissioner for Oaths is signing a document they should state clearly what exactly it is they are certifying in relation to the document. They must sign their own name and not use a company signature.

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Examples of Documents the Department can Authenticate\Apostille are:

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade can Authenticate\Apostille public documents which have been executed in the territory of One Contracting State and which have to be produced in the territory of another Contracting State.

Examples:

  • Original certificates issued by the General Registers Office (GRO)
  • Company documents issued by the Companies Registration Office
  • Documents signed by the Chambers of Commerce in Ireland
  • Court documents, Powers of Attorney, and other Notarial Acts can be Authenticated provided they bear an original signature, seal or stamp from a practising Irish solicitor\ Notary Public in Ireland
  • Educational Certificates can be Authenticated provided they fall within the National Framework of Qualifications established by the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland \ are recognised by the Department of Education.
  • We can also Authenticate\Apostille medical reports signed by a doctor who is registered with the Medical Council of Ireland.
  • Garda Clearance letters confirming a person's details for Consular purposes must be issued from the Superintendent's Office of the Garda station where you last resided in Ireland.  This letter must bear an original stamp and signature of the Garda Siochána.

An appointment is necessary for large numbers of documents and for full foreign adoption dossiers.

Photocopies of Documents
We can Authenticate\Apostille photocopies of certain types of documents provided they have been certified by a practising Irish Solicitor or Notary Public in Ireland. However, you should in the first instance confirm with the authority to whom you are presenting the document that a certified copy will be acceptable to them.

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How to get your Document Authenticated\Apostilled

Documents that have been executed in Ireland, and which are to be Authenticated or Apostilled by the Department can be:

Presented to the Department at its Public Office at the following address:

Consular Section
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Hainault House
69 - 71 St. Stephen’s Green
Dublin 2

or sent via post to:

Consular Section
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
80 St. Stephen's Green
Dublin 2

Documents sent by post must include the following:
A brief covering letter stating your name, return address, telephone number, you must state what country the document(s) are for use in, and you must include the appropriate fee. 

Tel. (01) 408 2174
      (01) 408 2322
      (01) 408 2557
      (01) 408 2576

For the Munster area:

Consular Services,
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade,
1A South Mall,
Cork

Tel :    021 4944765 / 021 4944766

Opening Hours:
The opening hours for the Public Offices in Dublin and Cork are as follows:
Monday - Friday (excluding Bank Holidays)
0930 - 1300
1430 - 1600

Fees
A fee of €40 is charged for each Apostille or Authentication.   There is a standard fee of €100  for a series of Apostilles or Authentications in relation to inter-country adoptions. All Post Placement Reports have a fee of €40.00

Please note that there may be an additional administration fee if applying for these services from our offices abroad. Fees will be notified on request.

Methods of Payment
This section relates to services available at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Dublin and Cork.

Payment can be made by Cash, Bank Draft (made payable to the 'Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade'), Irish Postal Order or by Credit/Debit card.

It should be noted that all bank drafts must be drawn on an Irish bank or a bank showing a connection with a bank in Ireland. Personal cheques are no longer accepted.

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E-Register Verification of Apostilles and Authentications

The online electronic register enables you to verify the authenticity of an Apostille or Authentication issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Ireland from 01 January 2013.

In order to verify an Apostille or Authentication, please click here

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Legalisation

Irish Diplomatic and Consular Missions abroad can legalise documents executed abroad for use in Ireland.

Administering oaths, affirmations and statutory declarations and certifying copies of documents:

Irish Diplomatic and Consular Officers abroad are empowered under Irish law to administer oaths, affirmations and statutory declarations. They can also certify copies of original Irish documents or translations.  

If you require any of these services, contact your nearest Irish Diplomatic or Consular Mission.    

The fee for these services in local currency and methods of payment will be notified, on request, by the relevant Mission.

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