If you intend on moving abroad, you may be required to provide an apostille stamp on your birth certificate.

At Notary.co.uk, our team of professional and expert notaries can assist you with authenticating your certificate.

Find out more about what a birth certificate is and our process for legalising this document.

Jump to…

  1. Process to Notarise and Apostille a Birth Certificate
  2. What Information Is Required When Applying For An Apostille Certificate On a Birth Certificate?
  3. What Is A Birth Certificate?
  4. What Do You Need a Birth Certificate For?
  5. Why You Might Need to Notarise and Apostille a Birth Certificate
  6. What Is The Difference Between Full Certificates and Short Certificates?
  7. Check your document
  8. Crown Copyright
  9. Foreign Birth Certificates
  10. Frequently Asked Questions

Process to Notarise and Apostille a Birth Certificate

To obtain an apostille, you will need to submit your birth certificate to the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) Legalisation Office.

There are two Legalisation Office counters – one in London (Premium Service) and one in Milton Keynes (Standard Service). We offer a premium same-day apostille service for urgent matters and standard 3-5 working day apostille service if you are not in a rush.

Notary.co.uk can assist you with our fast and cost-effective services and walk you through every step of the process:

  1. Firstly, if you are intending on certifying a foreign birth certificate, a Notary public will need to notarise the document before the apostille. A notary will witness your signature and will add their signature to certify the document as being authentic. Our highly trained team of notary publics can assist you with notarising the document.
  2. If you have a UK-issued birth certificate, it won’t need to be notarised and can be apostilled directly from the FCDO.
  3. After completing the Client Registration Form, you will need to provide us with the original birth certificate.
  4. We will then have the document notarised if required, otherwise, we will proceed to apostille the document on either our Premium or Standard service.
  5. Once this has been completed, we will share a PDF scan of the document. You can then collect it from our office, we can post it to a UK address via Royal Mail Special Delivery or we can courier the document internationally via DHL.

If you intend to use your birth certificate in another country that is not a member of the Hague Convention, then you may need consular legalisation for your birth certificate. Find out more information about individual countries on our Country Requirements List.

If you need your birth certificate notarised or issued with an apostille or consular legalisation, we’ll handle all the steps for you.

What Information Is Required When Applying For An Apostille Certificate On a Birth Certificate?

When applying for an apostille certificate on a birth certificate, you will need the following:

  • The original UK-issued birth certificate
  • Or a copy of your foreign-issued birth certificate notarised by a UK notary

What Is A Birth Certificate?

A birth certificate is an official record documenting the birth of a person which is issued by the government.

When births are registered, details are documented in a register book at a local register office in the area where the birth took place. Following this, a copy of the entry is sent to the General Register Office (GRO).

What Do You Need a Birth Certificate For?

A birth certificate is typically required for various official purposes, including but not limited to:

  • Proof of identity for obtaining government-issued identification documents such as a driver’s licence or passport.
  • Registering for school or educational programs.
  • Applying for government benefits or social services.
  • Establishing citizenship or immigration purposes.
  • Getting a marriage licence or applying for a marriage certificate.
  • Claiming inheritance or insurance benefits.
  • Verifying age for legal transactions such as obtaining a work permit or applying for a job.

Why You Might Need to Notarise and Apostille a Birth Certificate

You may need notarisation and an apostille stamp for one of the following reasons:

  • Applying for dual citizenship
  • Getting married abroad
  • Will execution
  • Registering a birth in another country

An apostille certificate is used to authenticate a UK-issued birth certificate or confirm the signature and seal of a notary on a foreign-issued birth certificate. The apostille provides extra reassurance to the recipient of the document in a foreign country that the document is authentic.

The Hague Convention in 1961 introduced apostille stamps as a form of legalisation for different types of documents such as birth certificates. Apostille certificates are accepted by over 120 member countries of the Hague Convention.

What Is The Difference Between Full Certificates and Short Certificates?

There are usually two types of birth certificates. These are full certificates, known as a ‘Certified Copy of an Entry’, and a short certificate, ‘Certificate of Birth’.

A full certificate includes the following details:

  • A child’s name
  • Gender
  • Place of birth
  • Parent’s names
  • Parents’ place of birth
  • Parents’ occupations

This certificate is an original entry from the birth register.

Short certificates only contain information including a child’s name, gender, date and place of birth. This is usually given when the birth is registered.

Check your document

We notarise many types of documents and can provide different types of certification to meet your needs.

The most popular documents we see are powers of attorney, passports, educational certificates and Companies House documentation. However, there are many other types we see regularly and are familiar with.

If your document is not listed and you are unsure if we can help, email us at info@notary.co.uk and we will be happy to confirm.

Crown Copyright

Most UK-issued birth certificates are protected by the Crown copyright law. This means that only the government is permitted to issue certified copies of birth certificates. Hence, a notary public is not able to notarise a copy of the certificate. A notary can however notarise the original birth certificate and confirm that it is authentic.

We are more than happy to provide you with information about notarial certificates for certified copies which are issued by the GRO.

Foreign Birth Certificates

If you have a non-UK birth certificate, it will need to be notarised first before it can be apostilled.

You will need to provide the original birth certificate to us, and we will carry out checks to confirm that it is authentic. We will then make a photocopy and notarise that photocopy.

Finally, we will submit the notarised copy to the FCDO on either our Premium or Standard Service to be apostilled.

If you will be using it in a country which has not signed up to the Hague Apostille Convention, it will need to be further legalised by the Embassy of the country it is going to. Please note that some Embassies will not legalise non-UK birth certificates, such as the Chinese Embassy.


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