Authentications and Apostilles
When using Irish documents overseas, for business or personal reasons, you might need to 'authenticate' or 'Apostille' them. This is also known as the "legalisation" of documents. The Department of Foreign Affairs are the competent authority who confirm that a signature, seal or stamp is from an Irish public official / body.
Our offices in Mount Street and Cork issue these physical stamps on your document. Authenticating / Apostilling a document doesn't mean that the Department of Foreign Affairs is verifying that its contents are accurate or that the Department approves of its contents.
Only Irish public documents (including notarised, private company documents with a clear Irish link) can be processed.
We cannot advise on whether a document requires authentication. This is a matter for you to find out. Contact the authorities in the country where the document will be used to check their requirements.
Only the Authentications Unit based in Dublin / Cork can issue these stamps. Embassies and Consulates cannot issue an Apostille or authentication stamp.
How to apply
What you need:
- The document you want to authenticate / Apostille
- A cover letter with the following information
- Your name
- The country you intend to use the document
- A phone number (required for credit / debit card payments)
- A contact email
- The address where documents are to be returned (or mark as "collection")
- The fee
- €40 per Authentication / Apostille stamp
- €100 per Adoption Pack
- €10 per export of goods document (for example - HPRA, Certificate of Origin, EPA certificate)
Postage is included in this fee.
Payment can be made by Irish bank draft / postal order, or we will contact you at the number you provide to us for payment by credit/debit card. Bank drafts and postal orders can be made payable to Department of Foreign Affairs.
We do not accept cash or AMEX cards.
Three Types of Service:
1. Walk-in Service (Dublin and Cork Offices)
We are operating a walk-in service from our office at 42 – 47 Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2. The service operates on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, and will close on Wednesdays. The following rules apply:
- No walk-in service will operate on Wednesday. Any documents brought in on Wednesday will be treated as a drop-off document.
- Opening hours are:
- 9.30 am – 12.30 pm
- 2.30 pm – 3.30 pm
- A maximum of five documents can be authenticated / apostilled while you wait. Our target turnaround time is thirty minutes. If you have more than five documents, documents will be returned by post at a later date, or you can request collection. We will advise when documents are ready for collection.
- If large bundles of documents are broken into smaller bundles by the same organisation, these will be treated as drop-off bundles as above. For example, if twenty documents are broken into four groups of five by the same company.
- Queries can be directed to our phone lines, or via our contact us form
Our Cork Office will operate a walk-in service from our office at 1A South Mall, Cork, T12 TA46 for two mornings each week. The same rules apply to the Cork Office as the Dublin office as above, with the exception of opening hours.
The opening hours are Tuesday and Thursday mornings only, between 9.30 am – 12.30 pm.
2. Postal Service
We are currently accepting documents by post. Our turnaround times for this service is, on average, three to seven working days from date of receipt.
Send your documents by registered post, and make a note of the tracking number. Documents will be returned by registered post at no additional cost. We bear no responsibility if your item does not arrive to our offices.
Post documents to:
|Rest of Ireland and Worldwide
Department of Foreign Affairs
80 St. Stephen's Green
Department of Foreign Affairs
1A South Mall
3. Drop-off Service (Dublin and Cork Offices)
You can drop documents, a cover letter and the appropriate fee to our offices. They will be returned by registered post. Or you can request collection, and we will phone you when they are ready. If you have more than five documents at the counter, your documents will be treated as the walk-in service, and they will be returned by post.
Please ensure your envelope is marked for the attention of "Authentications Section".
There are is a drop-off location operating between 9 am – 4 pm weekdays from Dublin:
Our Cork Office will also accept documents at these times.
Enquiries regarding the service can be directed here. The mailbox is monitored during work hours. If your request is extremely urgent, please contact us by phone.
Our phone lines are open weekdays between 9.30 am – 12.30 pm at +353 (1) 408 2174.
Please note – Threats, violence, abuse, derogatory comments or otherwise unacceptable behaviour towards our staff will not be tolerated.
Any person engaging in unacceptable behaviour will not be tolerated on the phone or in person. You will not be permitted to use our public counter, and will be asked to use our postal service.
Verify an Apostille or Authentication Stamp
The online electronic register enables you to verify the authenticity of an Apostille or Authentication stamp issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs in Ireland.
HCCH Apostille Section:
Regulation on Public Documents 2016/1191 (Multilingual Standard Form):
The Faculty of Notaries Public in Ireland:
Ordering Irish Certificates:
HCCH Authorities Who Issue Apostille Stamps on non-Irish Documents:
Authenticating a document verifies its origin by confirming that a signature, seal or stamp appearing on a document is genuine.
When would I need a document authenticated?
If you are going to use Irish documents overseas, for business or personal reasons, you may need to have them authenticated by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
This Department cannot advise on whether a document needs to be authenticated. This is a matter for the authorities in the country in which the document is to be used.
Who can authenticate documents?
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade can only authenticate documents executed in Ireland that will be used in other countries.
All documents must either be created in Ireland or show an Irish connection. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade reserves the right to refuse to authenticate any documents which we deem not to have an appropriate Irish link.
In the case of sworn documents, the person swearing the document before an Irish Notary Public or Solicitor must be resident in Ireland.
Solicitors, please note that documents signed in the name of the firm as opposed to the name of the solicitor signing the document will not be authenticated.
Copies of foreign Identification documents can only be authenticated if they have already been verified by the Embassy of that country accredited to Ireland.
All documents to be authenticated can only be authenticated if they have already been verified by the Embassy of that country accredited to Ireland.
All documents to be authenticated should bear an original signature, seal or stamp from an Irish practising public official or organisations.
Authenticating a document doesn't mean that the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is verifying that its contents are accurate or that the Department approves of its contents.
How we authenticate documents
An Apostille is a certificate issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade verifying the genuineness of the signature and/or seal of a public officer, on a public document. An Apostille may be required if you wish to use an Irish document in a country which has acceded to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents.
An Apostille can only be applied to a document by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. This function cannot be carried out by Irish Diplomatic or Consular officers abroad.
A document may need to be Legalised if it is for use in a country which has not acceded to the Hague Convention. Legalisation is a more complicated process in which a document must:
- Be authenticated by the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade in Ireland, and,
- Be authenticated by the diplomatic or consular mission accredited to Ireland of the country in which you wish to use the document.
Documents we authenticate
Original certificates (e.g. birth, marriage, death)
Company documents issued by the Companies Registration Office
Documents signed by the Chambers of Commerce in Ireland
Court documents, powers of attorney, and other notarial acts
Educational certificates and qualifications recognised by the Department of Education
Medical reports signed by a doctor who is registered with the Medical Council of Ireland
Garda Clearance letters (they must be issued from the Superintendent's Office of the Garda station where you last lived in Ireland and bear an original stamp and signature of the Garda Síochána).
We can Authenticate/Apostille photocopies of certain types of documents provided they have been certified by a practising Irish Solicitor or Notary Public in Ireland. However, you should in the first instance confirm with the authority to whom you are presenting the document that a certified copy will be acceptable to them.
Applying in Ireland
Call to our offices (Dublin and Cork)
If you have a document that was created in Ireland, and that needs to be authenticated, you can call to our public offices in Dublin or Cork. Please make an appointment if you have a large number of documents or a full foreign adoption dossier to be processed.
PUBLIC OFFICE ADDRESS:
42-47, Lower Mount Street,
Dublin 2, D02 TN83
Tel: 01 408 2174
Monday - Friday (excluding bank holidays)
9:30 - 12:30 and 2:30 - 4:00pm
The postal address for applications will continue to be:
Authentications Section, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, 80 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2, D02 VY53
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
80 St. Stephen's Green
Consular Services Section
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
1A South Mall
Tel: 021 4944765/021 4944766
Monday - Friday (excluding bank holidays) 9:30-1:00 and 2:30-4:00pm
ALL REGISTERED APPLICATIONS MUST BE SENT BY REGISTERED POST. POSTAL APPLICATIONS TAKE A MINIMUM OF 2 WEEKS FROM THE DAY OF RECEIPT IN CONSULAR DIVISION.
If you're sending documents by registered post, include a brief covering letter giving:
- your name
- return address
- telephone number
- the name of the country the document(s) are for use in
- the appropriate fee
Each Apostille/Authentication stamp is €40, with the exception of documents directly relating to the export of goods, which are €10 each
Adoption Dossiers are €100 for the original pack, regardless of the number of labels required. Additional documents relating to this original pack are free of charge.
Post Placement Reports are €40 for each report (usually up to four post placement reports)
Methods of payment
You can pay by:
- Bank draft (drawn on a bank in Ireland and payable to the 'Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade')
- Irish Postal order
- Credit/debit card
We do not accept Cheques or Electronic Fees Transfers.
Applying Outside Ireland
If you are living abroad and want to apostille or authenticate a document created in Ireland, the process is the same as for people living in Ireland: you have to apply to the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade directly – see instructions above re sending applications by post. This cannot be done via the Embassy or the Honorary Consulates.
If you are living abroad and need to have a statutory declaration or affidavit witnessed, a Notary Public in your area should be able to assist you.