For countries that did not sign the 1961 Hague Convention, documents must go through the authentication process attesting to the authenticity of the document before being submitted to the country of use. The apostilles are affixed by the competent authorities appointed by the government of a State party to the convention.  A list of these authorities is maintained by the Hague Conference on Private International Law. Examples of designated authorities are embassies, ministries, courts or (local) governments. In the United States, for example, the foreign minister of each state and his deputies are generally competent authorities. In the United Kingdom, all apostilles are issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Milton Keynes.  The Hague Conference (Apostille Convention) currently consists of 83 Member States, 82 States and an Organisation for Regional Economic Integration (March 2018). South Africa is one of the countries of the Apostille Convention. The others are: Below are listed the countries that are the Ampostille Convention (Hague Treaty Convention 12) and the Convention is in force with the United States of America.
The official list is available on the website of the Hague Conference of Private International Law: hcch.e-vision.nl/index_en.php?act=conventions.status&cid=41 This apostille only certifies the signature, the capacity of the signatory and the seal or stamp that bears it. It does not certify the contents of the document for which it was issued.  For a complete and up-to-date list of signatory states, click until the Hague Conference on Private International Law. The following checkpoints should help you decide if you need an apostille. The following countries are all members of the Hague Conference and came into force under Convention 12 of 5 October 1961, which abolishes the need to legalize foreign public documents. These countries will therefore accept the Apostille certificate instead of a new legalization procedure. Unlisted countries often require an apostille certificate, but they also need additional legalization or certificate from their embassy. Please contact us for a guide. Us authentication services do not offer services to countries, customers or companies covered by the Sanctions Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) program. A state that has not signed the agreement must indicate how foreign legal documents can be authenticated for its use. Two countries may have a specific convention on the recognition of the other`s public documents, but in practice this is rare.
Otherwise, the document must be authenticated by the Foreign Ministry of the country where the document was developed, and then by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State Government where the document is used; one of the certifications is often carried out in an embassy or consulate. In practice, this means that the document must be certified twice before producing legal effects in the recipient country. For example, because Canada is not a signatory, Canadian documents for use abroad must be certified by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs in Ottawa or by a Canadian consular official abroad, and then by the government office or the relevant consulate of the host state. If you need certified and legalized documents for a non-postage member country, you must, if necessary, take measures such as state verification or verification of the Ministry of State and legalization of embassies or consulates.