Attesting German Documents (FAQs)

Frequently Asked Questions about German Apostille services

Can German documents be legalized by Apostille?

Yes - Germany is a member of the Apostille Convention.

German documents can be legalized for use abroad with an Apostille Stamp when destined for other signatory countries without additional certification by the destination country.

When German documents are required for non-apostille countries, such as AE United Arab EmiratesUnited Arab Emirates - TW TaiwanTaiwan - MY MalaysiaMalaysia - TH ThailandThailand - ZM ZambiaZambia - QA QatarQatar they need additional authentication by the embassy of the destination country.

For further information see:
Right arrowGermany Apostille Services

Submission within the European Union
Certain German documents do not require Apostilles when they are presented to authorities of other European Union countries (the receiving authority should accept the original or a certified copy).

When applying for certain public documents, a multilingual standard form may be requested to accompany the original. A multilingual standard form must always be issued and signed by a German authority, providing a translation aid designed to help the receiving authority to understand a public document which is in a language not accepted by the receiving EU country.
See: EU Multilingual standard formsExternal link (opens in new tab)

German documents not requiring Apostilles include birth, death, marriage certificates, absence of a criminal record (a clean criminal record of a German citizen), certificates of nationality and residence:
See: Regulation (EU) 2016/1191External link (opens in new tab)

Other German documents, including academic certificates, still require Apostille certification and certified translation to be valid in other EU countries.

Civil status certificates (multilingual extracts from the civil status registers)
German birth, marriage and death certificates) issued in accordance with the conventions of the International Commission on Civil and Civil Status should not require Apostille Stamps when being submitted to one of the following countries:

Austria, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cape Verde, Estonia, France, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Multilingual certificates of no impediment to marriage
German certificates of no impediment to marriage are exempt from any formality for submission to the following countries (Munich CIEC Convention):
Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Switzerland, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey

Exceptions to Apostille Convention (Documents issued in Germany)
Germany has objected to the accession of certain States to the Apostille Convention (including India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Tunisia and Morocco), so that the Convention does not apply between Germany and these states. Documents required for these states may also require additional attestation by the embassy of the recipient embassy in Berlin.
For a full list of countries with which the Apostille Convention applies in relation to German documents, see:
Countries where Apostille Convention applies in relation to GermanyExternal link (opens in new tab)

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What types of documents can be legalized in Germany for use abroad?

Federal, State and judicial documents can be legalized in Germany with Apostille stamps. These include:

To confirm whether your document is eligible for apostille authentication in Germany, please contact us and we’ll check your document free of charge. For further information about our German apostille services and for assistance obtaining official copies of German documents, see:
Right arrowGermany Apostille Services

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How can I obtain an apostille for a German birth, death or marriage certificate?

Apostille stamps to certify German civil status certificates: Birth Certificate (Geburtsurkunde), Death Certificates (Sterbeurkunde) and Marriage Certificates (Heiratsurkunde) from the State Authority of the state where the event took place:

  • President of the Government; President of the Administrative District; District government; Land Ministries of the Interior
  • Berlin: State Office for Civil and Regulatory Affairs
  • Bremen and Hamburg: Senate Administration or Ministry of the Interior
  • Lower Saxony: Police Directorates
  • Rhineland-Palatinate: Supervisory and Service Directorate
  • Saxony: regional directorates
  • Chemnitz, Dresden and Leipzig
  • Saxony-Anhalt: State Administration Office
  • Thuringia: State Administration Office

Isarey works across Germany to obtain Apostille Stamps for German birth, death and marriage certificates in different states.

To be eligible for an Apostille Stamp, certificates must have been issued within the last six months. For assistance in obtaining new certified copies of German birth, death and marriage certificates, please contact us.

For further information about authenticating and attesting civil status certificates in Germany, see:
Right arrowGerman civil status certificates

Submission within the European Union
German certificates of civil status (marriage, death and birth certificates) do not require an Apostille stamp when required for submission in another Member State of the European Union. For further information, see:
Regulation (EU) 2016/1191External link (opens in new tab)

Civil status certificates (multilingual extracts from the civil status registers)
German birth, marriage and death certificates) issued in accordance with the conventions of the International Commission on Civil and Civil Status should not require Apostille Stamps when being submitted to one of the following countries:

Austria, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cape Verde, Estonia, France, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Exceptions to Apostille Convention (Documents issued in Germany)
Germany has objected to the accession of certain States to the Apostille Convention (including India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Tunisia and Morocco), so that the Convention does not apply between Germany and these states. Documents required for these states may also require additional attestation by the embassy of the recipient embassy in Berlin.
For a full list of countries with which the Apostille Convention applies in relation to German documents, see:
Countries where Apostille Convention applies in relation to GermanyExternal link (opens in new tab)

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How long does it take to obtain an apostille on a document in Germany?

Processing times for German Apostilles vary depending on the type of document and the Federal, State or Judicial authority issuing the Apostille Stamp. In most cases, State Apostilles take around 2 weeks, but are sometimes available within 2-3 business days, or in some cases, Apostilles can take 6 - 10 weeks.

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I need an apostille for my German birth, death or marriage certificate - do I need to provide an original certificate?

To obtain an Apostille on a German death, marriage or birth certificate, the original certificate must be submitted to the State Authority to issue the Apostille. The original certificate must be no more than 6 months old. For assistance obtaining new certified copies of German civil status certificates, please contact us, or see:
Right arrowGerman civil status certificates

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I need an apostille for my German criminal record certificate - do I need to provide an original certificate?

To obtain an Apostille on a German Certificate of Good Conduct, the original certificate or a notarized copy is required. For further information, see:
Right arrowCertificates of Good Conduct

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How can I obtain an apostille for my German University Degree and Transcripts?

Apostilles on German University diplomas and course transcripts can be applied to a notarized true copy or to certificates that have been certified by the issuing university. Apostilles on notarized copies are obtained from the local Regional court where the notary is based. Apostilles on university-certified diplomas and transcripts can be obtained from the competent authority in the State where the University is based (for example, President of the Government; President of the Administrative District; District government).

Unless a notarized copy is used, certified copies of diplomas must be specifically requested from the issuing university (the original diploma issued to students cannot normally be used).

University-certified copies must be authenticated for attestation by the embassies of the United Arab Emirates and Qatar (notarized copies are not valid).

For further information, see:
Right arrowGerman university diplomas

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How can I obtain an apostille for a German Power of Attorney?

To obtain an Apostille for a Power of Attorney made in Germany, it must be signed in front of a German notary public. An Apostille, confirming the notary's signature and good standing, can then be obtained from the Regional Court. For assistance in arranging notarizations and apostilles across Germany, please contact us.

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Will past convictions always be listed on a criminal record?

Conviction will not be listed in a German certificate of good conduct when the convicted person may claim to be unpunished and no longer has to disclose the facts on which the conviction is based. Otherwise, the non-inclusion of an entry is only considered in special exceptional cases where it is demonstrated that inclusion of a conviction would constitute undue hardship.

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How can I obtain a German Apostille on a Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage?

Apostilles on German Certificates of no impediment to marriage are available from the competent State Authority (for example, President of the Government; President of the Administrative District; District government).

Multilingual certificates of no impediment to marriage
German certificates of no impediment to marriage are exempt from any formality for submission to the following countries (Munich CIEC Convention):
Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Switzerland, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey

Exceptions to Apostille Convention (Documents issued in Germany)
Germany has objected to the accession of certain States to the Apostille Convention (including India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Tunisia and Morocco), so that the Convention does not apply between Germany and these states. Documents required for these states may also require additional attestation by the embassy of the recipient embassy in Berlin.
For a full list of countries with which the Apostille Convention applies in relation to German documents, see:
Countries where Apostille Convention applies in relation to GermanyExternal link (opens in new tab)

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Where can I see reviews of Isarey's German Attestation and Apostille Services?

You can see reviews from past clients who have used our attestation and apostille services:

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How can I obtain a copy of a German birth, marriage or death certificate?

German marriage, death and birth certificates (available in German only or in a standard international multilingual format) are available from the German registry office (Standesamt) in the village, municipality or city where the event took place. German civil status certificates are restricted, which means copies can only be obtained by the person named in the certificate or close relative, or otherwise by an authorized representative.

Certificates for births, deaths and marriages occurring outside Germany (and in the former Eastern territories of the German Reich and Prussia) are available from the State Office for Civil and Regulatory Affairs in Berlin:
German civil status certificates for births occurring outside GermanyExternal link (opens in new tab)

For further information about obtaining German Civil Status Certificates and authentication for use abroad, see:
German civil status certificates

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How can I obtain a German Apostille to certify a passport, driving licence or other ID document?

To obtain an Apostille on a German passport, driving licence, ID or Residency Document, a certified copy should be made by a German notary. An Apostille can then be applied to the certified copy by the Regional Court.

We can arrange for the notarization and authentication of German ID documents where clients are based outside Germany. Please contact us for information.

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How can I legalize a German degree certificate for submission to the United Arab Emirates?

German degree certificates and course transcripts required for submission to UAE authorities or in support of UAE visa applications need to be attested by the UAE embassy in Berlin.

The first step is to contact the university and obtain a certified copy. This certified copy must have the official seal of the university and must confirm that it is copy is a true representation of the original. The certificate should then be legalized by the responsible State Authority (e.g. District Government, Ministry of Science, State Office for Civil and Regulatory Affairs (Berlin), Regierung von Oberbayern (Munich), Regional Council) with an over-authentication (Uberbeglaubigung) and then with a further final authentication (Endbeglaubigung) from the Federal Agency for Foreign Affairs. Once the final authentication has been applied, the diploma can be submitted to the embassy for final attestation.

For assistance and further information, see:
Right arrowGerman university diplomas

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How can I legalize a German degree certificate for submission to Taiwan?

To legalize a German degree certificate for submission to the authorities of Taiwan or in support of a Taiwanese visa application, it needs to be attested by the Taipei Representative Office in the Federal Republic of Germany (Taipeh Vertretung in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland) in Berlin. The Taipei Representative Office will attest notarized copies of German certificates authenticated by the Regional Court.

For further information and assistance, please see:
German university diplomas

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How can I legalize a German degree certificate for submission to Saudi Arabia?

German degree certificates and course transcripts can now be attested for use in Saudi Arabia with an Apostille Stamp. Attestation by the Saudi Cultural Bureau and embassy is no longer required since Saudi Arabia acceded to the Apostille Convention in December 2022.

Apostilles can be applied to notarized copies or university-certified copies.

For further information and assistance, see:
Right arrowGerman university diplomas

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How can I legalize a German degree certificate for submission to China?

German degree certificates and course transcripts can now be attested for use in China with an Apostille Stamp. Attestation by the Chinese embassy is no longer required since China acceded to the Apostille Convention in November 2023.

Apostilles can be applied to notarized copies or university-certified copies.

For further information and assistance, see:
Right arrowGerman university diplomas

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How can I obtain an Apostille on a German Certificate of Good Conduct?

Apostilles on German criminal record certificate - Certificates of Good Conduct (Führungszeugnis) can be obtained from the Federal Agency for Foreign Affairs (Bundesamt für Auswärtige Angelegenheiten). Certificates must be pre-certified by the Federal Office of Justice (Bundesamt fur Justiz). This takes 6 - 10 weeks

Alternatively, Certificates of Good Conduct can be notarized and an Apostille stamp applied to the notarized copy by the Regional Court. This only takes 6 - 10 weeks, but you should confirm that the recipient authority does not require the Apostille on the original certificate.

For further information, please see:
Right arrowCertificates of Good Conduct

Submission within the European Union
German certificates of no criminal record do not require Apostilles when being submitted to other states of the European Union where the certificate is for a citizen of Germany and where the criminal record is clean. Non-German nationals may still require an Apostille. For further information, see:
Regulation (EU) 2016/1191External link (opens in new tab)

Exceptions to Apostille Convention (Documents issued in Germany)
Germany has objected to the accession of certain States to the Apostille Convention (including India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Tunisia and Morocco), so that the Convention does not apply between Germany and these states. Documents required for these states may also require additional attestation by the embassy of the recipient embassy in Berlin.
For a full list of countries with which the Apostille Convention applies in relation to German documents, see:
Countries where Apostille Convention applies in relation to GermanyExternal link (opens in new tab)

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How can I obtain a German Certificate of Good Conduct for use abroad?

German Certificates of Good Conduct proving an absence of criminal record in Germany (Fuhrungszeugnis) are issued by the Federal Office of Justice (Bundesamt für Justiz). Certificates take at least 2 weeks to be issued. Applications may only be submitted for yourself or by a person legally representing you.

Applications for the certificate may be submitted:

Germany issues different types of Good Conduct Certificate:

  • Certificate of conduct for personal use: commonly used for submissions for foreign visas, residency and citizenship applications.
  • Certificate of conduct for submission to a public authority: when certificates have been requested by a public authority in Germany.
  • Extended criminal records check: required by individuals wishing to work with children and young people (applications must include confirmation that this type of certificate is legally required).
  • European certificate of conduct: available to German nationals who are also nationals of another EU state or of the United Kingdom. It contains information on any convictions recorded in the applicant's home country, as well as details of the applicant's criminal record in Germany.
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I need to legalize a German document for use abroad. Do I need an Apostille or an authentication?

German documents can be legalized by Apostille Stamp when the recipient country is a member of the Apostille Convention. However, there are some exceptions, including India, Pakistan and Senegal. See:
Countries where Apostille Convention applies in relation to GermanyExternal link (opens in new tab)

Documents required for all other countries, including India, will need to be attested by the embassy of the recipient country. Before submission to the embassy, documents must be authenticated by the competent State or Federal authority, depending on the type of document, with an "over-authentication" (Uberbeglaubigung).

Additionally, certain embassies require a second or final authentication (Endbeglaubigung from the Federal Agency for Foreign Affairs). The following embassies require a final authentication:
Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Iraq, Iran (except for university certificates), Jordan, Cambodia, Qatar, Lebanon (only for school and training certificates), Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Nepal, Rwanda, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Taiwan (Taipei Trade Office, only for certificates from the field of justice), Togo, United Arab Emirates (except for commercial deeds).

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I need to submit a German Certificate of no impediment to authorities abroad. Do I need an Apostille?

Apostilles are not required when submitting German certificates of marital status to the authorities of another Member State of the European Union.

A multilingual standard form may be requested to accompany the original. A multilingual standard form must always be issued and signed by a German authority, providing a translation aid designed to help the receiving authority understand the certificate when in a language not accepted by the receiving EU country.

EU Member States are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden
See: Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of 27 April 2016 (EU GDPR)External link (opens in new tab)

Apostilles are not required when submitting German Multilingual certificates of no impediment to marriage issued to the authorities of a country that has acceded to the Munich CIEC Convention. Members of the Munich CIEC Convention are as follows:
Germany, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Switzerland, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

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I need to submit a German Criminal Record Certificate to authorities abroad. Do I need an Apostille?

Apostilles are not required when submitting German Criminal Record Certificates to another Member State of the European Union when the certificate is issued to a German national and when the criminal record is clean (no convictions). In other cases, the recipient Member State may require an Apostille.

EU Member States are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.
See: Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of 27 April 2016 (EU GDPR)External link (opens in new tab)

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I need to submit a German Birth, Death or Marriage certificate to authorities abroad. Do I need an Apostille?

Apostilles are not required when submitting German birth, death and marriage certificates to the authorities of another Member State of the European Union. A multilingual standard form may be requested to accompany the original. A multilingual standard form must always be issued and signed by a German authority, providing a translation aid designed to help the receiving authority understand the certificate when in a language not accepted by the receiving EU country.

EU Member States are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden
See: Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of 27 April 2016 (EU GDPR)External link (opens in new tab)

German birth, marriage and death certificates (multilingual extracts from the civil status registers issued in accordance with the conventions of the International Commission on Civil and Civil Status) should not require Apostille Stamps when being submitted to countries that have acceded to the Vienna CIEC Convention. The following countries are contracting states of the Vienna Convention:
Austria, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cape Verde, Estonia, France, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

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Do German Criminal Record Certificates have an expiry?

German Certificates of Good Conduct do not expire. But if your certificate is more than 3 months old, you should check with the authority that has requested the certificate that they do not require a new issue.

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How can I get a quote to certify my documents?

To receive a quote, you can upload your documents using our online quotation form or send us your documents by email. After reviewing your documents and requirements, we will get back to you with a quotation:

If you don’t have the documents available, just describe the documents you need to certify, and we will get back to you with an estimation of cost and delivery times.

Using our quotation form, your documents will be uploaded over a secure connection and immediately encrypted on our server. For added protection, you can upload password-protected files ( PDFExternal link (opens in new tab), Microsoft Office 365: Save a password protected document to prevent unauthorized people from opening it. Office DocumentsExternal link (opens in new tab), WinRAR Encryption Frequently asked question (FAQ) RAR foldersExternal link (opens in new tab)) and provide us with the passwords separately.

PERSONAL DATA: If your documents contain personal data belonging to people outside your household, please ensure that you are authorised to share this data before uploading your documents. If your documents contain sensitive personal data, such as biometric data, medical data or data on criminal convictions, please ensure that you indicate this when prompted, upon submitting your documents. For further information on our processing of personal data contained in uploaded documents, please see:
Privacy Policy (Customer Inquiries)

For further information on confidentiality in our handling of document content please see:
Confidentiality (Client Content)

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