• New Forms to Replace Apostille Process for EU Nationals by February 2019
  • August 25, 2016
  • Law Firm: Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen Loewy LLP - New York Office
  • The EU Parliament and Council have approved a rule that will allow foreign nationals who seek a legalized document to request it through a new multilingual form that will not require any legalization, apostille or translation processes. The rule is expected to be implemented by February 16, 2019.

    Rule Details

    The issued multilingual form will need to be attached to the requested document and will serve as legalization and certified translation within the European Union. The option to obtain legalization/apostille/translation as per existing national laws will remain. The forms will not be recognized outside of the European Union.

    Current Approved List of Documents

    Once the rule is implemented, it will immediately apply to the following documents, among others:
    • Documents proving civil status including birth, marriage and death certificates, parenthood or adoption certificates, registered civil partnership, legal separation or annulment of registered partnership;
    • Documents proving domicile and/or residence;
    • Documents proving nationality; and
    • Criminal records or criminal clearance certificates.
    The rule will not apply to university diplomas, which are specifically excluded from the scope of this legal instrument.

    A committee is expected to review the rule after two years of implementation to determine whether other documents should be added to the list.


    Until the implementation date, the EU Parliament and Council have set deadlines for member states to provide information needed for the use and development of the forms, such as the languages they will accept for the public documents, a list of public documents within the scope of the rule and a list of public documents to which multilingual standard forms may be attached as a suitable translation, among others.

    What This Means for Employers and Foreign Nationals

    The rule should save EU nationals time and resources since they will no longer be subject to legalization or apostille requirements for many public documents submitted with EU immigration applications.

    Once this regulation is implemented, document translation and legalization costs and processing times for affected documents are expected to decrease.