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The German Embassy in Manila found out that the requirements for the legalization of official documents (such as Birth Certificates, Marriage Certificates, Death Certificates and Court Decisions) are not given in the Philippines until further notice. On September 12, 2018 the Philippines acceded to the Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents (Apostille Convention). However, the Federal Republic of Germany declared an objection to the accession of the Philippines to the Apostille Convention. Therefore, Philippine-issued Apostilles will not be valid for legal use in Germany.
It is, however, possible to conduct an examination of documents if a German authority (also consular and diplomatic offices of the Federal Republic of Germany) considers this necessary for its work in Germany. The German authority can then officially request for assistance from the Embassy. For this, the German authority has to attach the original Philippine document to the request, and ask specific questions resp. request a global examination. Private persons cannot request such a verification.
Only documents regarding the civil status that were issued by the PSA (Philippine Statistics Authority), formerly known as NSO, are acceptable. Documents issued by Local Civil Registry offices (LCR) are not sufficient. An authentication of documents regarding the civil status or Apostille by the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs is not required; translations of the documents are not required, either.
The following certificates and supporting documents are required for the examination of documents and should be prepared in this exact order:
- Birth Certificate
- PSA-Index Certificate (CENOMAR or CEMAR / Advisory on Marriages) - for persons older than 18 years
- Please note: The PSA-Index Certificate is an excerpt from the ‘National Indices of Marriages’. For single persons the PSA issues a CENOMAR (Certificate of No Marriage = Certificate of Singleness). If the person is/was married, the submission of a CEMAR (Certificate of Marriage) is required (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH THE MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE).
- Two (2) passport-size pictures and one (1) whole body picture (13x18cm) of the owner of the document to be examined
- Consent to the checking of the documents by the document holder (available as a pdf here) - signed in original
- Passport copy of the document holder - bearing signature of the passport holder
- Declaration in English language signed by the holder of the document stating the complete address(es) of residence in the Philippines from age 15, that is for minors since birth (detailed declaration regarding the address is absolutely required, including street and house number as well as - where available - the “nearest landmark” – where possible a sketch is to be submitted). Please note that a Barangay Clearance is not sufficient. (available as PDF here).
- If a previous marriage existed, then the Marriage Certificate must also be submitted, as well as a proof that the previous marriage was dissolved, e.g. the Court Order and Certificate of Finality concerning the dissolution of the previous marriage or the Death Certificate of the previous spouse.
- Birth certificates of children (if any). In case a migration (even at a later stage) to Germany is planned, the following additional documents are necessary:
- Baptismal Certificate
- Elementary School Permanent Record (Form 137)
- Declaration of Address for Minors
- Two (2) passport size pictures and one (1) whole body size picture
- Baptismal Certificate
- Elementary School Permanent Record (Form 137). (Please do not submit High School or College- / University Records or Diplomas!)
- Marriage Certificate of the parents, issued either by PSA or LCR (If the parents were not married, please hand in the mother's CENOMAR/CEMAR)
- Two (2) passport-size pictures of the parents or respectively their death certificates (either PSA or LCR)
- Birth Certificate(s) of sibling(s) (if any); in this case simple photocopies of the Birth Certificates issued by PSA or LCR are sufficient.
Each document is to be handed in as an original with two (2) photocopies. These do not have to be authenticated.
We cannot accept requests for assistance that are handed in without all necessary documents. All requests not complying with this rule will be returned to the requesting authority for completion.
The Embassy cannot conduct the examination with its own personnel, but must be supported by a trusted lawyer, other trusted persons, as well as specialized information agencies. The final evaluation and report is executed by the consular officer of the Embassy.
A processing time of four to six months must be expected. The Embassy will confirm the receipt of the official request for the examination and will give an update to the requesting German authority after two to three months. Due to the time-intensive processing, the Embassy will not be able to answer additional inquiries about the status of the document checking.
The outlay for the examination is 16.000,- PHP plus 10,- EUR postage fee (currently 650,- PhP), no matter how many documents are to be examined.
With examinations that are taking place in the course of the visa application the Embassy can directly claim the examination fee from the visa applicant.
In other cases the Embassy requires the forwarding of a declaration of cost absorption (up to 330,- Euros) by the German authority requesting the examination of the documents. The Embassy will send the bill of charges upon conclusion of the examination of the documents to the authority (which is the debtor).
The authorities in Germany can use the official diplomatic courier of the German Foreign Ministry to forward their official request for the examination to the Embassy via
für Bo. Manila
The diplomatic courier is not available for requests or mail to the Embassy from private persons.
Although the information on this information sheet has been prepared with utmost care, we cannot accept any responsibility for inaccuracies contained herein.