Legalisation of documents from India for use in the Netherlands
If you want to use a document from India in the Netherlands, you must first have it legalised by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. This is done with a special stamp called an apostille.
Due to the corona virus, the possibilities to have foreign documents legalised at an embassy or consulate-general are limited. Please check the online appointment system to see if it is possible to make an appointment. If no times are available, it is not yet possible. Do you only need to have your documents legalised by the local authorities? Then check with the local authorities if that is possible.
Who can have documents legalised?
Anyone who has one or more documents from India can have them legalised for use in any part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands:
- the European part of the Netherlands
- St Eustatius
- St Maarten
Requirements for your document
Your document must be original and complete. If the document refers to other documents or annexes, these must be included.
Translation of your document
If your document is not in English, French, German or Dutch you might need to have it translated. The following rules apply:
- Your document must be translated by a sworn translator.
- It must be translated into English, French, German or Dutch.
- If the sworn translator is registered outside the Netherlands, you must also have the translation legalised.
Which documents can be legalised?
You can have various documents legalised, such as diplomas and certificates. The most common documents are:
Official copy of a birth certificate
If you were born before 1 April 1970:
- You can request an official copy from the office of the Registrar of Births and Deaths in the municipality where you were born.
- If your birth was not registered or was registered late: You can request an entry-not-found certificate or a late entry birth certificate from the office of the Registrar of Births and Deaths in the district where you were born.
In the state of Punjab late entry birth certificates are only issued for births that took place on or after 1 April 1970.
If you were born on or after 1 April 1970:
- You can request an official copy from the office of the Registrar of Births and Deaths in the state where you were born. States often have their own rules for registering births.
- If your birth was registered late: You can request a late entry birth certificate from the office of the Registrar of Births and Deaths in the district where you were born.
Missing or non-available birth certificates
You can request an entry-not-found certificate or a non-availability certificate from the office of the Registrar of Births and Deaths in the district where you were born.
An affidavit can also serve as proof of your birth.
Some states have their own rules for issuing entry-not-found certificates and non-availability certificates.
An affidavit is a written statement made under oath before a civil-law notary.
You are an Indian national born before 1947 in what is now Pakistan
Contact Pakistan's diplomatic mission in India to find out how to get an official copy of a birth certificate.
Certificate of unmarried status
A certificate of unmarried status or eligibility to get married can be issued by a competent court or Sub Divisional Magistrate having jurisdiction of the area of the residential address of the applicant. This can be acquired as a certificate/affidavit notarized by the Sub Divisional Magistrate, which is required to be further legalised by the Home Department of the State concerned. The details of the authorities who have to legalise the document can be found on the website of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (pdf, 96 KB).
Thereafter, the document has to be apostilled by the Attestation Section of the Consular, Passport & Visa (CPV) Division of the Ministry of External Affairs.
Official copy of a marriage certificate
You can request this official copy from the office of the Registrar of Marriages in the state where you got married.
If your marriage was not registered there, contact the body that solemnised the marriage.
Official copy of a divorce certificate
You can request a certified copy of a divorce certificate from the court where the divorce was granted.
Islamic divorce certificate
You can request a certified copy of a Muslim divorce certificate from the Qazi or head of the Jamaat in question.
A divorce decree issued by the court can be submitted as proof of the divorce.
Official copy of a death certificate
If the death occurred before 1 April 1970:
Ask the Indian authorities where you can get this document.
If the death occurred on or after 1 April 1970:
You can request an official copy of the death certificate from the office of the Registrar of Births and Deaths in the state where the death took place.
Where can you have your documents legalised?
You can get an apostille from the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. For details see the website of the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH). Once your document has been legalised with an apostille, it can be used in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Documents issued by the Indian consulate in Oranjestad (Aruba)
Documents issued by the Indian consulate in Oranjestad must be legalised by the Department of Legislation and Legal Affairs (DWJZ) in Oranjestad. After legalisation, you can use your document in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Assistance from the CDC in The Hague
In certain cases the Consular Service Centre (CDC) can help Dutch nationals apply for documents or have documents legalised.
Verification of your document
The stamp or sticker on your document means only that the correct signature is on your document. Legalisation does not prove that the content is correct or that the document is authentic. A municipality in the Netherlands, the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) or another authority may decide to check this.