For a public document issued by a country to be valid in another country, the document must comply with international authentication requirements. (*)
There are two channels for getting the international authentication of a public document, according to whether the country issuing the document is a signatory of The Hague Convention of October 5, 1961.
If the country issuing the public document has signed The Hague Convention, such document will be recognised in Spain if it bears The Hague Apostille, which must contain the text “Apostille (Convention de La Haye du 5 Octobre 1961)”.
This Apostille must be processed by the authentication office of the relevant government.
If the country issuing the public document has not signed The Hague Convention, the authentication process will be carried out by diplomatic channels, through (1) the authentication stamp of the authentication office of the government of the country issuing the public document; (2) the authentication stamp of the consular mission of Spain in said country; or (3) the authentication stamp of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation.
Also, any public documents written in a language that is not an official language of Spain must be translated (by an sworn translator according to Spanish law) into Spanish or, if the procedure corresponds to bodies based in an autonomous region, into any of the languages that are also official languages in that autonomous region.
The following translations are valid:
The translations done or revised by the diplomatic missions or consular offices must be authenticated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation.
(*) Since the entry into force of the Regulation (EU) 2016/1191 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 2016, public documents covered by this Regularion should be exempted from legalisation and from its sworn translation between EU member countries. In addition, there will be multilingual standard forms in each of the Union official languages to be attached to these public documents.
Last updated: 09|05|2019