• Faithful to my Homeland, the Republic of Poland



  • Certification of documents


    Information concerning the certification of public documents intended for circulation  in foreign states


    Polish public documents intended for circulation in foreign states are certified through:

    1. Apostille – in the case of documents intended for circulation in states that are parties to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents (Journal of Laws of 2005, no. 112, item 938);
    2. Legalization – in the case of documents intended for circulation in states that are not parties to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961.

    Records issued by register offices/ registries of vital records and statistics, court documents, administrative documents, public notary’s deeds, official certificates attached to private documents are considered public documents. In the meaning of the Convention, administrative documents, which directly concern commercial transactions or customs operations are not considered public documents.  The apostille or legalization is not required when a bilateral or multilateral agreement which is binding upon the Republic of Poland has abolished or simplified legalization or has exempted from legalization documents with respect to matters covered by the scope of such agreements.

    The competent authrotity to issue the apostille or to legalize Polish documents is the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (address: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Legalization Section, ul. Krucza 38/42, 00-512 Warsaw, tel: (+48 22) 523 9463 or (+48 22) 523 9128;  e-mail: or e-mail:, office hours: 9.00 am – 1.00 pm, Monday through Friday. The Consular Information Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also provides information on certification of documents: tel. +48 22) 523 9451, (+48 22) 523 9448, (+48 22) 523 9248; e-mail:

     Before the apostille is issued or documents can be legalized in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, certain documents first have to be authenticated:

    - notary’s deed and court documents (except for copies from the National Court Register) are certified by the President of the competent circuit court;

    - diplomas of higher education institutions are certified by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education ( However, diplomas issued by higher art schools (Academies of Music. Academies of Fine Arts, Theatre and Film Schools) are legalized by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage; the Minister of Defense legalizes diplomas of higher military schools; medical school diplomas are legalized by the Minister of Health; diplomas issued by the Gdynia Maritime University in and the Maritime University of Szczecin are legalized by the Minister of Infrastructure;

    - the new Matura (Certificate for Overall Maturity for Higher Education) is certified by the Ministry of National Education (http://www/;

    - school certificates are certified by the competent local board of education;

    -  master craftsman’s certificates, craftsman’s certificates are certified by the Association of Polish Crafts in Warsaw;

    - commercial documents are certified by the Polish Chamber of Commerce in Warsaw and by regional chambers of commerce (http://www/

    The stamp duty charged on certification of documents amounts to: PLN 60 for the apostille and PLN 26 for the legalization of documents (legal basis: Act of 16 November, 2006, on Stamp Duty, Journal of Laws of 2006, no. 225, item 1635). Stamp duty may be paid in cash at the cashier’s desk located on the premises of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or by wire transfer made to the following account:


    Urząd M.St. Warszawy, Dzielnica Śródmieście, ul. Nowogrodzka 43

    Bank Handlowy w Warszawie S.A.
    60 1030 1508 0000 0005 5001 0038
    Dla płatności z zagranicy:
    IBAN: "IBAN PL60 1030 1508 0000 0005 5001 0038"


     Payment is made for every certified document.

    Applications for the issue of the apostille or for legalization of documents may be filed with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs persoanlly or by a third person (no additional authorization is required). Documents may be sent by mail, also from abroad. When certyfing documents that have been sent by mail, you have to include in your  mail a proof of payment of the stamp duty (copy of a bank wire transfer) and provide your return address.  Then, certified documents will be sent to you by mail, also abroad.

     Greater number of documents, above 20, are legalized after prior arrangement by telephone.

     An up-to-date list of States Parties to the Hague Convention of 1961 is available at this Internet address: or at the legalization centre.

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