Apostille and Authentication Services in Ireland – Update 2024

23 January 2024

Apostille and Authentication Services in Ireland – Update 2024

If you intend to use an Irish document abroad, whether for business or personal purposes, it may be necessary to undergo a process known as ‘authentication’ or obtaining an ‘Apostille’ for that document. This procedure, commonly referred to as ‘legalisation,’ serves to confirm the authenticity of signatures, seals, or stamps on the document. The Apostille and authentication stamps facilitate the recognition of public documents issued in Ireland within another country.

The Department of Foreign Affairs maintains records of various signatures, seals, and stamps, and serves as the authoritative body confirming their authenticity. The specific stamp issued depends on the destination country for the document, and the department’s staff will provide guidance on the appropriate type.

Currently, the DFA does not offer a digital service.

It is essential to note that Apostille or authentication stamps can only be issued for Irish public documents with a clear Irish connection, such as an Irish address, Irish Passport details, or an Irish company registration number.

We are able to offer guidance on whether a document requires authentication or any further legalisation required to completed authentication process. For information on specific requirements, it is also recommended to contact the relevant authorities in the country where the document will be used.

In some cases, a notary public may need to notarise your document before we can issue a stamp. Additional details can be found on our website

It’s important to emphasise that the act of authenticating or Apostilling a document does not imply the Department of Foreign Affairs is verifying the accuracy of the document or endorsing its contents.

Distinguishing Apostille from Authentication

 While both serve the same purpose, there are distinctions between Apostille and authentication stamps. An Apostille is a certification form outlined in The Hague Convention of 5 October 1961, known as The Hague Apostille Convention, which eliminates the need for legalisation of foreign public documents. The details of the Hague Apostille Convention can be found on The Hague Conference on Private International Law website.

In cases where a document is intended for use in a country not party to The Hague Apostille Convention, an authentication stamp is provided.

Authentication stamps involve a two-step process, necessitating a counter-signature from the Embassy or Consulate of the destination country. For instance, if a document is destined for use in a non-Hague Convention country, our office authenticates it, and subsequently, the document must be submitted to the Embassy (or sometimes in the UK) representing the country for counter-signing.

Apostilles are commonly issued for public documents such as civil status documents (e.g., birth, marriage, and death certificates), notarial authentications of signatures, degrees, and other educational documents.

Our company has offices in the UK, USA and Switzerland where most of the Consulates are based which gives us an opportunity to manage the entire process in-house.

How you can submit your documents

We offer a walk-in service at our Dublin office located at 16 Innscourt, Winetavern Street, Dublin 8. It is necessary that you email us your document before you coming in.

The walk-in service in Dublin operates from Monday to Friday. Please note that the DFA has no Authentications services on Wednesdays.

Opening hours:

  • 9.00 am – 17.30 pm

What you need to bring:

  • The document you want to authenticate/Apostille

Fees: Fees can be paid online through a payment link which will be provided to you.

The following service fees apply:

DFA disbursement fees:

  • €40 per Authentication/Apostille stamp
  • €100 per Adoption Dossier
  • €10 per export of goods document (e.g., HPRA document, Certificate of Origin, EPA certificate)

Order Processing fees ( agency fees for handling the application, arranging an additional notarisation if required, hand delivery / collection of your documents from DFA, dealing with queries and arranging return postage ):

  • €50 euro for the 1st document and €10 euro for the next document, capped at €100 euro for 10 documents

Please note: Our target turnaround time is 1-2 business days depending on the time when we receive your documents.

If you have more than five documents, we can submit them at the counter as a drop-off service. Your documents will be collected once processed, usually the next day. Our staff will contact you when your documents are ready.

Postal Service – Submitting Your Documents

 To send your documents to our office, you can use our postal service. The average turnaround time for this service is 1-2 working days from the date of payment.

We strongly recommend using registered post for sending your documents. Always make a note of the tracking number. Please be aware that we cannot assume responsibility if your item fails to reach our offices.

Your authenticated documents will be returned to you via DHL, or collection.

Please send your documents to the following addresses:

Document Legalisation Department

16 Inns Court

Winetavern Street

Dublin 8



What to submit:

  • The document you want to authenticate/Apostille
  • A cover letter including the following details:
    • Your name
    • The country where you intend to use the document
    • The address for document return (Note if you prefer to collect your documents)
    • A contact phone number and email address

Contact us: Queries about the submission process can be directed to our phone lines at +353 (1) 968 2499 or via email to info@apostille.ie

Our phone lines are open on weekdays between 9.00 am – 17.30 pm.

How to Verify an Apostille or Authentication Stamp

You can use the online electronic register to confirm the legitimacy of an Apostille or Authentication stamp issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs in Ireland

What Documents Can an Irish Embassy Legalise?

 Irish Embassies and Consulates are not authorised to provide authentication or Apostille stamps. However, they can affix their counter-signature to authentication stamps issued by foreign authorities in the country where the Embassy or Consulate is located.

Educational Documents:

 Leaving Certificate

We authenticate the following:

  1. The original Leaving Certificate (including provisional results)
  2. A notarised copy of your Leaving Certificate by an Irish notary public or the State Examinations Commissioner
  3. A notarised PDF hardcopy of your results from the Candidates Self-Service Portal
  4. School report, either notarised by an Irish notary public or bearing the original wet ink stamp from the school. The school in question must be listed on Find a School – https://www.gov.ie/en/service/find-a-school/

Please note that we do not accept Leaving Certificate results issued by a school on their letterhead, even if notarised.

University Documents

We authenticate:

  1. Original educational certificates from Irish universities registered on the Irish Register of Qualifications – https://irq.ie/
  2. Notarised copies of educational certificates from Irish universities (as mentioned above)
  3. College transcripts bearing the original stamp from the university on the document
  4. Notarised copies of college transcripts

Additionally, educational institutions funded by an Irish Governing Body (e.g., Sport Ireland) can be authenticated when notarised by an Irish notary public.

Police Clearance Certificates

 Emailed or scanned copies of Garda clearance certificates cannot be accepted by the Department of Foreign Affairs. The original document, bearing a wet ink stamp from the Garda station, and featuring the original signature, is required.

To facilitate the submission process, you may contact the issuing Garda station and request them to send the document directly to our office. Ensure that the package is addressed to the Authentication Unit, and you can find the postal address in the “how to apply” section of this website.

Please notify our office of your intention to submit the Garda clearance certificate. We will require a cover note along with payment to proceed with the document processing.

Civil Status Documents (Birth, Marriage, and Death)

Among the frequently requested document types for legalisation are civil status documents. Specific rules apply:

  1. Only Irish civil status documents issued by the General Register Office (GRO) can be legalised.
  2. The original GRO-issued documents do not require notarisation for us to proceed with the legalisation process.

Legalisation of UK documents

We can legalise most of the UK issued documents by Apostille or the UK based Embassy via our London or Belfast office. If you require to legalise document issued in the UK, please email: info@docsbase.com

Certified Copies of Documents

We have the capability to Authenticate/Apostille photocopies of specific document types. These photocopies must be certified by a practicing Irish Solicitor or an Irish notary public. However, it is advisable to initially confirm with the relevant authority, to whom you intend to present the document, whether a certified copy will be deemed acceptable to them.

Securing Documents in the Bundle

 Only an Irish Notary Public has the ability to securely bind documents, ensuring the integrity of the bundle.

This practice guarantees that no documents are added or removed from the bundled set. It is essential to note that foreign documents, such as a foreign passport, cannot be included in this binding.

Best practice involves a notary public binding the documents and affixing a Notarial Act Certificate to the front of the bundle, referencing each document within the certificate.

However, it is advisable to verify with the relevant authorities to whom you are submitting the bundle whether this method is acceptable, as some may prefer individual stamps on each document. Please be aware that our charges are applied per stamp issued.

When a solicitor signs documents, each document is treated individually, and the stamp issued pertains solely to that specific document.

Various binding methods can be employed, including the use of staples, but additional security measures are necessary. This can be achieved by covering the rear side of the staple with at least a sticker or, ideally, by covering both sides of the staple.

If no sticker is present over the back of a staple, the documents will be returned for secure binding by the notary.

International Documents

 Irish Apostille Legalisation is exclusively applicable to Irish public documents.

Documents must either originate in Ireland or demonstrate a clear Irish affiliation, such as a full Irish address, CRO (Companies Registration Office) company number, or information issued by the Irish government.

If you have foreign documents and require Apostille or Consular Legalisation, please check with our International desk to see if we have an office or agent in the country where your document was issued

Get in Touch

For email inquiries about any of our services, please contact us via email at info@apostille.ie, which is monitored during business hours.

Our phone lines are available on weekdays from 9:0 am to 05:30 pm at +353 (1) 968 2499.