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.