The notary public may certify the authenticity of a document issued by a Finnish authority or a comparable party (for example, physicians or authorised translators) for foreign authorities.

The Apostille certificate replaces the legalisation of the document if the document will be used in a state that is party to the so-called Apostille Convention, the Hague Convention.

You need an Apostille when you have to have the official competence of the person who has signed the document certified. The certificate is used for documents that will be presented to public authorities in states that are party to the so-called Apostille Convention.

You can obtain an Apostille only for documents that have been issued by a public authority or a comparable party (for example, authorised translators, licenced physicians).

You can obtain an apostille for a private document only after the notary public has first certified the competence of the person who has signed the document or the authenticity of the signature.

You will need an Apostille only abroad. In the Nordic countries or within the EU, the certificate is usually not needed for certain general documents issued by public authorities to confirm, for example, a person’s birth, death, name, marriage, place of residence or citizenship.



  • Make sure that the state in which you need to present the document is party to the Apostille Convention.

  • Make sure that the document is the original one and that the signature on it is the original, authentic signature of the issuer of the document.


Do the following

  • Take the original document to an office of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. Explain in which country you will present the document and that you need an Apostille for it.

  • If the receiving state requires an Apostille for a document issued by a party other than a public authority, the notary public must first certify on the document either the authenticity of your signature or your right to act on behalf of the person who signed the document. Once this has been done, an Apostille can be attached to the document.



The certificate costs EUR 30.

Links to laws related to the

Regulation on Public Documents (EU) 2016/1191


Frequently asked questions