Legalisation of Documents

A notary will notarize a document.  However before you send it to the country in which it is to be used you may need to have it legalized by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.


Most overseas Governments, courts and institutions need proof that Australian documents are genuine before they will accept them.  The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade will certify that a notarial signature and seal on a document is genuine by checking it against a specimen of the notary's signature and seal held on file.


Legalisation can take two forms, either an Apostille or Authentication.


An Apostille should be obtained if the document is being sent to a country which is a party to the 1961 Hague Convention on Abolishing the Requirements of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents. 

If the document is being sent to a county which has not signed the Hague Convention then Authentication is required.  Some significant counties which are not parties to the convention include China, Canada, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates.

For more information on legalisation of documents see:

In Canberra an Apostille or Authentication can be obtained at the legalisation counter of the Australian Passport Office located in the R G Casey Building, Sydney Avenue, Barton.  The legalisation counter opens between 8.30am and 1pm Monday to Friday.  To make an appointment in Canberra to obtain an Apostille or Authentication go to:  


The Department charges $87 for providing an Apostille or Authentication.