International Recognition of Documents

Authorities often recognize documents from another country only when their authenticity or probative value has been established by a special procedure. For the international recognition of documents, there needs to be a guarantee then that those documents which are to serve as evidence in another country have been issued by the competent authority and are correct with regard to content as well.

German law differentiates between public and private documents. The authenticity of public documents is validated either through an apostille or through legalization.

Our Offer

The nationwide close cooperation with authorized translators enables us to offer certified translations in various language combinations. Our authorized translators have years of experience in the area of document translation and meet the requirements and qualifications which enable them to produce certified translations of your official documents. 

When translating from languages with characters other than the Latin alphabet, our document translators work according to the respective ISO standards to ensure that the transliteration of personal and place names will be accepted by the German authorities without difficulty. 

We provide certified translations of public and private documents for use in Germany and abroad for the following document types:  

  • Birth certificates, adoption documents, certificates of no impediments, marriage certificates, civil union documents, change of name documents, divorce decrees, wills and testaments, certificates of inheritance, death certificates
  • Identification cards, passports, proofs of citizenship, certificates of good conduct 
  • School report cards and secondary school leaving certificates, degree certificates, certificates, letters of reference 
  • Driver’s licenses and driving permits 
  • Court decisions (judgments, orders) 
  • Business contracts (company agreements, confidentiality agreements, payment agreements, powers of attorney, debt contracts, loan contracts, credit agreements, agency contracts, cooperation agreements, trade agreements, contracts of sale, contracts of guarantee, and others) 
  • Other contracts (contracts for sale of real property, rental agreements, leases, lending agreements, leasing agreements, and others)
  • Balance sheets, annual accounts, business reports and tax assessments
  • Official excerpts from commercial registers, official abstracts of title 
  • Proofs of insurance, opinions, audit and expert reports 
  • Certificates of all types 
  • Other documents  

Our competence in the area of translating official documents from various fields of law is supported by our authorized translators. In order to ensure a smooth communication between the legal representatives of different nations, we will assist you with our interdisciplinary expert knowledge.

Translators of Documents

In most cases, German authorities request a translation of foreign-language documents. This translation is to be executed by a translator authorized in Germany. A court may also order that a translation of foreign-language documents, executed by a translator who was authorized for translations of this type according to a country`s national law, be furnished.


In the states party to The Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents, the otherwise required legalization is replaced by the Apostille. This convention applies to all public documents with the exception of documents executed by consular agents and administrative documents dealing directly with commercial or customs operations. Each contracting state designates the authorities competent to issue the Apostille in its territory. 

In relation to Germany, the Convention applies among others to the following states:
Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, France, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, United States.

Legalization of Public Documents

Foreign and German public documents respectively to which the Hague Convention does not apply may be legalized for use for legal purposes. Whether legalization is required or whether the document is recognized as authentic without any further proof, is decided by the authority where the document is to be produced. 

Legalization is performed by the consular officers of the embassies and consulates and certifies the authenticity of the signature, the capacity in which the person signing the document has acted and, where appropriate, the identity of the seal which the document bears.