An international treaty developed and adopted by the Hague Conference. The full title of the Convention is the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents. The final text of the Convention was adopted by the Hague Conference at its Ninth Session on 26 October 1960 and was first signed on 5 October 1961 (hence the date in its full title). In accordance with its Article 11(1), the Convention entered into force on 21 January 1965, 60 days after the deposit of the third instrument of ratification. The Hague Conference has adopted many other international treaties (known as the Hague Conventions).
The Apostille Convention is the most widely ratified and acceded to of all the Conventions adopted under the auspices of the Hague Conference (known as the “Hague Conventions”). It is in force in over 100 States from all major regions representing all major legal systems of the world, making it one of the most successful international treaties in the area of international legal and administrative co-operation.
Thus, an Apostille consisted of an annotation in the margin of a document or at the end of a letter.
During the negotiations on the Hague Apostille Convention, the term “Apostille” was preferred because of its novelty. According to the reporter: “Following a discussion on terminology [in the French language], the word Apostille have been preferred because of its appealing novelty.” The meanings of the word Apostille described above are still valid today.
1 archaic : a marginal note
2 : a document used in international law that is issued by a government in accordance with the Hague Convention and that certifies that another document has been signed by a notary public.History and Etymology for apostille. Middle French, from apostiller to add notes, ultimately from Medieval Latin postilla note, probably from post illa (verba textus) after those (words of the text)
• Does the Apostille Convention apply in boththe country that issued the public document and the country where I intend to use it
• If the country that issued the public document hasdesignated several Competent Authorities, which one is the relevant Competent Authority to issue an Apostille for my public document
No. An Annex to the Apostille Convention provides a Model Apostille Certificate(which is reproduced at the beginning of this brochure). Apostilles should conform as closely as possible to this Model Certificate. In particular, an Apostille must:• be identified as an Apostille; and• include the short version of the French title of the Convention (Convention de La Haye du 5 octobre 1961); and• include a box with the 10 numbered standard informational items.An Apostille may also provide additional information. For example, an Apostille may:• provide extra information about the public document to which it relates;• recall the limited effect of an Apostille (i.e., that it only certifies the origin of the public document to which it relates);• provide a web-address (URL) of a register where the origin of the Apostille may be verified; or• specify that the Apostille is not to be used in the country that issued it.However, such additional information must be outside the box that holds the 10 numbered standard informational items
• their origin cannot be verified (i.e., if and when the particulars on the Apostille do not correspond with those in the register kept by the Competent Authority that allegedly issued the Apostille); or • their formal elements differ radically from the Model Certificate annexed to the Convention.