Our experience and our connection with the Italian Courts and local Consulates allows us to quickly provide certification services for highly professional documents for use in Italy or abroad: Apostilles and Legalizations, notarized documents, sworn translations and much more. Our experts will be able to guide you in choosing the most suitable certification service to meet your needs.
What is it?
Often, indivuals or companies need to enforce on foreign territory documents drawn up in Italy; and vice versa.
In order to enforce and use a document in international contexts (e.g. a notarial deed or a certificate of good standing), a special certificate of authenticity recognised and accepted by foreign countries is required.
There are two certificates of authenticity, which are used to certify the origin of any document in an international context: Apostille and Legalization.
Both certifications do not guarantee the validity or effectiveness of the content of the document, but only the authenticity of its provenance (for example, the notary status of the person who drafted it or of the Authority that issued it).
The Apostille is a certificate which is attached to the document itself, or to a supplement thereto, by the competent authority of the State from which the document originates and certifies with full legal value:
The States which accept and recognize the Apostille as a valid certificate for the authenticity of the origin of the documents are all States signatory to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961, ratified by Italy.
Legalization is a form of certification that is performed by the Consular or Diplomatic Offices present in the territory of the country of origin of the document to be certified. It consists in the official attestation - made by the competent consular or diplomatic authority - of the legal qualification of the signatory of the document and the authenticity of his signature (for example, if it is necessary to use a document formed by an Italian Authority in China, the signature of the Italian Authority is "legalised" by the Chinese Consulate in Italy).
Legalization is the procedure used by States that do not accept and recognise the Apostille (e.g. China, United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Taiwan).
What are they used for?
The lack of legalization or Apostille means that the document (although valid and effective in the State of origin) cannot produce effects in other States and cannot be presented to the Authorities or used by a notary public.
Both certifications of authenticity are particularly useful for those who carry out business activities, having to use business documents certified in the country of origin or in other foreign States.
The following list is an example of some of the many documents for which certification of authenticity is usually required: