Certifying Foreign and National Public Documents

In this section you can check what the process of certifying national and foreign public documents (such as diploma, extract from the registry of births, different attestations and other public documents) entails and how much it costs

Certification of a document verifies the authenticity of the stamp and signature of the official appearing on the document but does not go into its content.

In order to use foreign public documents (such as diploma, extract from the registry of births, different attestations and other public documents) in Croatia or use Croatian documents abroad, they will have to be legalised or apostilled.

If you possess a foreign public document that you require for exercising a right in the Republic of Croatia, you can use it provided that it was certified with an Apostille by the competent authority of the country in which the document was issued.

For instance, if a document was issued by a Swiss authority, you will have to have the document apostilled by a competent Swiss authority.

If you need certification of a public document issued by an authority in the Republic of Croatia, you can request certification in the form of an Apostille from the competent municipal court in Croatia according to the location of the authority that issued the document.

If the document was issued by an authority of a country which is not a signatory of bilateral agreements with the Republic of Croatia on legal matters abolishing legalisation of documents issued by one country for their use in another country or the Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents, the document will have to be legalised, or apostilled by a full legalisation process in the country where the document was issued.

The Process of full Legalisation of Public Documents

The full legalisation process in the Republic of Croatia means that you will have to do the following with a document issued by an authority in the Republic of Croatia to be able to use it abroad:
  • have it translated by a court interpreter in the Republic of Croatia
  • have it certified by the competent municipal court according to the registered address of the authority that issued the document
  • request that the judge’s signature and court stamp be apostilled by the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration
  • request that the official’s signature and stamp of the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration be apostilled by the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs.
All of these steps should be done in person at the competent court or Ministry of Justice and Public Administration. The Ministry of Justice and Public Administration is open for certification of documents for use abroad from Monday to Thursday between 9 and 11 am and between 1 and 3 pm, between 9 am and 12 pm on Fridays.

If you are unable to attend, you can hand the documents to a relative or trusted person, who can submit the request and obtain the certification from the court and the ministries on your behalf.

Fees

The process of full legalisation of documents before a municipal court is subject to the following fees:
  • signature or fingerprint in the amount of HRK 30
  • signature or stamp on documents issued by public authorities of the Republic of Croatia and local and regional self-government units, companies or other legal persons in the amount of HRK 50
  • manuscript in the amount of HRK 50 per half a sheet of manuscript
  • transcription in the amount of HRK 50 per half a sheet of transcription
  • signature and stamp of permanent court interpreter or permanent court expert on a translation or expert finding and opinion in the amount of HRK 60

The process of full legalisation of documents at the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration is subject to a HRK 30 fee for each certification of an official signature and stamp.

The process of full legalisation of documents at the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs is subject to a HRK 55 fee for each certification.

Fees up to HRK 100 can be paid in the form of state stamps, while fees exceeding HRK 100 should be paid into the account of the State Budget of the Republic of Croatia: 1001005-1863000160.

More information can be provided by the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration, on Tuesdays between 9 am and 1 pm, by calling +385 (0)1 3714-000.
 

Information Communicated by the Commission and EU Member States on the Content of the Regulation on Public Documents (Article 21) – joint text

Information on the circulation of certain public documents between Member States

In accordance with EU Regulation promoting free movement of citizens, starting from 16 February 2019 certain public documents and their certified copies are exempt from legalisation and certification with an apostille. Certain documents (see documents in bold below) can be issued in the form of a multilingual standard form so that no translation is required; however, in any case, a certified translation from any EU country must be accepted.

Exemption from legalisation and certification with an apostille is only applicable to documents and their certified copies issued by public authorities of a Member State which were submitted to public authorities of another Member State. 

In addition, the exemption is applicable only to documents verifying one or several of the facts below. Documents indicated in bold are those that are available as multilingual standard form. Please keep in mind that not all forms are issued by all Member States.
  • birth
  • death
  • person being alive
  • name
  • marriage, including capacity to marry and marital status
  • divorce, legal separation or marriage annulment
  • registered partnership, including capacity to enter into a registered partnership and registered partnership status
  • dissolution of a registered partnership, legal separation or annulment of a registered partnership
  • parenthood or adoption
  • permanent and/or temporary residence
  • citizenship
  • absence of criminal record
  • running for or voting in European Parliament elections or local elections in another Member State.
The Regulation on Public Documents is implemented in the Republic of Croatia in case of the following documents:

1. Birth Certificate
2. Death Certificate
3. Marriage Certificate
4. Certificate of single status
5. Certificate of Registered Partnership 
6. Certificate of Permanent and/or Temporary Residence
7. Certificate of Clean Criminal Record

8. Certificate for running for or voting in European Parliament elections or local elections in another Member State.

Certificates No. 1-5 are issued by registry offices, certificate No. 6 is issued by police departments, while certificates No. 7 and 8 are issued by the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration.

Namely, the central authorities competent for the implementation of the Regulation on Public Documents on the territory of Croatia for public documents under their competence are the Ministry of Justice and Public Administration and the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

Furthermore, on EU territory this pertains to the following documents:
  • documents issued by a court or a court official
  • administrative documents
  • documents issued by a notary public
  • official certifications superimposed on private documents
  • diplomatic and consular documents.

The multilingual standard form can only be used in another Member State and shall be submitted together with the public document it accompanies.

If a Member State provides for submission of a certified copy instead of the original document, the authorities of this country shall accept a certified copy from the country which issued the document.

Further information on the Regulation and multilingual standard forms is available at the European e-Justice Portal.

 

List of countries that require the documents to be apostilled

An Apostille of a document is required for countries that signed the Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents:
List of countries that require the documents to be apostilled.