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Source: Zuständigkeitsfinder Schleswig-Holstein (Linie6PLus)
German public documents and certificates that are intended for use abroad must be notarized in Germany under certain conditions if the foreign state requires this.
The following are notarized
- the authenticity of the signature,
- the capacity in which the signatory has acted and
- if applicable, the authenticity of the seal or stamp affixed to the document.
The authenticity of this document is confirmed by legalization or apostille, depending on the country of use:
- For countries that have acceded to the Hague Convention of 05 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Public Documents, an apostille is required.
- Documents intended for other (non-acceding) countries are legalized. Legalization is then carried out by a consular official at the diplomatic mission or consular post of the country in which the document is required.
Who should I contact?
In Schleswig-Holstein, jurisdiction depends on the origin of the document. Specifically, the competent authority is
- the Ministry of the Interior, Municipal Affairs, Housing and Sport with regard to all public documents issued in the state of Schleswig-Holstein, with the exception of the documents listed below under numbers 2 to 4 and those issued by federal agencies. Certification by the Ministry of the Interior, Municipal Affairs, Housing and Sport is generally preceded by preliminary certification by the administration of the district/city in whose district the document was issued, for example in the case of birth, marriage and death certificates and registration certificates.
- the Ministry of Justice and Health with regard to all public documents issued in its area of responsibility and in the area of fiscal jurisdiction, with the exception of the documents listed under numbers 3 and 4 below.
- the Presidents of the Regional Courts in Flensburg, Itzehoe, Kiel and Lübeck, each with regard to the public deeds issued in their area of responsibility and those issued by the notaries who have their official seat in their district.
- the Presidents of the Local Courts in Kiel and Lübeck, each with regard to the documents issued in their area of responsibility.
Which documents are required?
- Document(s) to be notarized and
- Identity card or passport.
Notarizations are usually required at very short notice. This is precisely when you should coordinate the completeness and certifiability of your documents with the responsible office in advance by telephone to avoid unnecessary time and travel.
What are the fees?
The fee for the certification of each document is 20.00 euros.
What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?
The apostilles/certifications issued automatically lose their validity if the documents are no longer valid. This may be the case, for example, with registration certificates or certificates of no impediment to marriage. Applicants can find out how up-to-date the documents must be from the consular mission of the respective country.
- Act on the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (UrkBefrÜbkG Haag),
- Ordinance on the Regulation of Jurisdiction under the Act on the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents of 15 October 1965, as amended on 31 December 1971 (HaagÜbkGZustV SH).
What else should I know?
Further information on the legalization of documents and apostilles can be found on the website of the state government of Schleswig-Holstein.
On the website of the Federal Foreign Office (AA) you can find out which countries have acceded to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 on the exemption of public documents from legalization.
The text was automatically translated based on the German content.