The Philippines – Authentication of Notarised Documents

This article is no longer relevant after 2019. The Philippines is now a member of the Apostille Convention and recognises documents that have been stamped with an apostille. Authentication through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and legalisation through the Philippines Consulate no longer applies for documents intended for the Philippines.

Notarising documents for the Philippines

phAs a leading provider of notary public services in Sydney, we are regularly approached to assist clients with sending documents to the Philippines. Sometimes these documents relate to qualifications and educational records, sometimes it relates personal correspondence and authorisations, and sometimes it relates to business documents or agreements.

Some of the common documents that we are asked to notarise are:

  • Legal documents such as court documents or estate documents.
  • Company records. For example, certificate of incorporation, certificate of registration or change of names, company searches or current company extracts.
  • Power of attorney or authorisations to appoint people to take part in various dealings or activities in the Philippines on your behalf, or confirmation of appointments to specific roles or duties.
  • Contracts and agreements between parties in the Philippines and parties in Australia.
  • Qualification and education records. For example, school certificates, university and college degrees, academic transcripts, or letters of admission or confirmation of enrollment or attendance.
  • Evidence of citizenship, residency or address. For example, copies of your visa, proof of address on your drivers licence or utilities bill.
  • Personal documents. For example, copies of passports, birth certificates, marriage certificates or death certificates.

Whatever the case may be, each document must follow a similar process which involves notarisation by our notary public, authentication through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and then authentication through the Philippines Consulate General Sydney (which is the most relevant consular office in terms of proximity to our office). The Philippines Consulate also publishes a Schedule of Fees on their website.

Aside from notarising your documents, we can also assist you with arranging for authentication through DFAT if you do not wish to make your own arrangements. In the past, having your notarised documents authenticated through DFAT was simply a matter of attending their offices, however since January 2017, the process has changed. You must now make an appointment before attending DFAT’s offices in order to have your notarised documents authenticated.

Interestingly, we have many clients who indicate that they only require notarisation and authentication by DFAT. They do not require authentication through the Philippines Consulate and that is what they are advised by their counterparts in the Philippines (often local agents who are experienced in dealing with local authorities in the Philippines). While this position may be correct depending on the documents intended use or intended recipient and we cannot comment on what happens in the Philippines, we encourage you to check any advice that is contrary to the normal process of notarisation, authentication by DFAT and authentication by the Philippines Consulate.

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Do you have any questions regarding this article?

Whether you're notarising a document for the first time or the hundreth time, the requirements, processes, and terms can be confusing and daunting - or just a pain and a hassle (especially if you need an apostille, or to authenticate or legalise as well). Don't worry! We're here to simplify it, explain it, and help you with what you need to achieve it.

Contact us or visit our Frequently Asked Questions for more information about our notary public services. We've also created a flowchart to help explain notarisation, apostille, authentication and legalisation.

So, what's next?

Visit our Notary Fees page for a free quote for our notary public services or just call us on +61 2 9687 8885 to speak with our friendly team about your requirements.

Why choose Phang Legal for your notary public services?

We're a leading provider of notary public services in Sydney known for our experience and expertise in notarising documents for other countries, our low-cost fixed fees and service offering, and our availability to help on short notice. With our offices conveniently located in Parramatta, the geographic centre of the Sydney metropolitan area, we help clients from across Sydney and beyond with personal, professional and timely notary public services.

Ern Phang, Notary Public
Ern Phang
Notary Public

This website is maintained by Phang Legal, a boutique law firm in Parramatta and a leading provider of quality notary public services to satisfied clients across Sydney.

Ern Phang is a director of Phang Legal and a notary public (since 2005). Ern regularly writes about his experiences as a notary public and the issues faced by his clients in sending documents to other countries.

All information contained in this article is for general purposes only and correct at the time of publication. Only rely on information and advice specific to your situation and current at the time you wish to rely on it.