Public apostilled documents executed outside the
Philippines no longer need to be authenticated by the
Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in order for
those documents to be considered authentic in the Philippines.
This is because on May 14 2019, the Philippines became a party
to the 1961 Convention Abolishing the Requirement of
Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents, or the Apostille
The Apostille Convention has streamlined the authentication
process for public documents executed in a jurisdiction that is
a state party to the Apostille Convention (State Party) by
replacing the formalities of a full authentication or
legalisation process with the mere issuance of an 'apostille'.
The apostille certificates are issued by the authorities
designated by each State Party. In the Philippines, the DFA
Office of Consular Affairs (DFA-OCA) issues the apostilles.
Thus, public documents from State Parties are exempt from
legalisation and need not be authenticated abroad by the
diplomatic or consular agents of the State Party where the
document is to be used. Public documents executed in the
Philippines which are apostilled by the DFA need not undergo
diplomatic or consular authentication in the State Party
jurisdiction where the documents are to be produced. Once
apostilled, the document can be validly used in any State Party
Before the Philippines became a party to the Apostille
Convention, documents executed in the Philippines which were to
be used offshore underwent 'chain authentication', which
required certification by the relevant government agency or
office, authentication by the DFA, and authentication (or
legalisation) by the embassy of the country of destination.
Documents executed in a foreign country (even if it were a
party to the Apostille Convention) that were to be used in the
Philippines also had to undergo a similar process.
It should be noted that the benefits under the Apostille
Convention apply only to documents to be used in, or that are
from countries that are parties to the Apostille Convention;
the chain authentication process of the Philippines DFA still
applies to documents from, or that will be used in countries
that are not parties to the Apostille Convention.
|Bhong Paulo A.
|Joan Mae S.