Before certain New Zealand documents can be used overseas, document authentication may be necessary.

It is usually required where overseas officials are not able to determine on sight the authenticity of New Zealand documents. To check the requirements, contact the relevant authorities in the country concerned or their overseas representatives.

The authentication process varies depending on the document type and country requirements.

If your document is to be sent to a country that is not on the list of countries shown in this document, an Apostille certificate will need to be attached to the document. The Department of Internal Affairs can advise the procedures to be followed for this process.

The Authentication procedures and fees at each stage are set out below.

Please read the following steps carefully - they may save you costly delays.

  • Step 1 | Notarisation
  • Step 2 | Authentication
  • Step 3 | Verification - Category A or Category B

 Step 1 | Notarisation

Your documents need to meet certain requirements before you send them to Internal Affairs:

1. A birth, marriage*, death or change of name certificate issued in New Zealand:  Send the original document to Department of Internal Affairs if it has the round seal of the Registrar of Births Deaths and Marriages (or the Registrar-General).

Some older documents do not have either seal and so new certificates need to be ordered from Births Deaths and Marriages. You can call them on 0800 22 52 52 (from overseas +64 4 474 8150) or download their application forms at www.bdm.govt.nz (external link).
* Internal Affairs cannot authenticate the marriage certificate that you signed on your wedding day (the Copy of Particulars of Marriage). They can only authenticate an official marriage certificate ordered after the wedding.

2. A document bearing the seal and/or signature of an approved government agency such as a District/High Court, a Police station, the NZQA, the NZFSA, IRD, etc.  Send the original to the Department of Internal Affairs.

Criminal Conviction Letters from the Ministry of Justice:

When ordering these please ask the Ministry of Justice to print the Criminal Conviction Letter on their blue logo paper with an ink signature. The Department of Internal Affairs cannot attach an authentication certificate to black and white letters.

Please follow the instructions on their website (these apply for all countries):

Companies Office documents:

Certificates of Good Standing, Incorporation and Extracts are available electronically from the Companies Office website. You need to request these via email so that they contain a validation code. You can then email (or post) them to the Department of Internal Affairs and they can validate and authenticate them.

To order these documents please go to:

Documents that are not issued by the government:

Documents such as contracts, references, powers of attorney, academic documents*, Chamber of Commerce certificates and any other document not issued by the government needs to be notarised by a Notary Public in New Zealand before you send them to the Department of Internal Affairs office. The Notary Public will sign the document and affix his/her seal to it. You can find a list of Notaries Public for your area in the Yellow Pages of your telephone book. The Notary Public will charge a fee [external link].

You then need to send the Department of Internal Affairs only the notarised copy, not the original.

You cannot have your documents certified by a solicitor or a JP (Justice of the Peace).

*All documents issued by a school or university will need to be notarised before you send them to the Department of Internal Affairs. They cannot authenticate original documents issued by schools or universities. They can only authenticate original documents issued by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) and the Ministry of Education.

If you are uncertain whether your documents require notarisation, please check with the Department of Internal Affairs Authentication Unit (external link).

 Step 2 | Authentication

The Authentication Unit at the Department of Internal Affairs authenticates the signature and seal of the approved Government Agency or Notary Public. This takes up to five working days. Please advise the Authentication Unit if urgent processing is required. Once the Authentication Unit has authenticated your documents they will pass your documents on to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade for the next step in the authentication process.

Make sure you have enclosed:

The document/s to authenticate. If you have more than one document to authenticate, you may need to check with the end-user whether the documents can be processed as a set or authenticated separately. Documents in a set will be joined together.

Documents with different seals can be authenticated as one set. For example a birth certificate with the round seal of the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages can be authenticated with a document that bears the signature and seal of a Notary Public.

Please indicate clearly which supporting papers belong together, and the order of each set, when you submit more than one set of documents. You should paper clip or staple each set together.

Fees

All fees are paid to the Department of Internal Affairs. The fee includes payment for both the Department Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Please find the instructions (Category A or Category B) corresponding to the country you wish to use your document/s in to determine the cost of your authentication.

Return Postage

  •  Within New Zealand
    • include a stamped self-addressed envelope, OR
    •  include a self-addressed prepaid courier pack.
  •  Outside New Zealand
    • A self-addressed prepaid international courier pack

Send your document/s and any letters of instruction to the Department of Internal Affairs at:

By Courier:
Authentication Unit  Department of Internal Affairs
 c/- Level 5  
120 Victoria Street  
Wellington 6011

Standard Post:
Authentication Unit
C/- The Translation Service
Department of Internal Affairs
PO Box 805  Wellington

Step 3 | Verification - Category A or Category B

 

Category A - Countries that require the signature and seal of the Ministry Foreign Affairs and Trade on an Authenticated document

  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade verifies the signature and seal of the Department of Internal Affairs and returns the documents to you by your stamped self-addressed envelope or pre-paid courier pack.
  • The foreign diplomatic overseas mission verifies the signature and seal of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and returns the authenticated documents to you by your self-addressed envelope or pre-paid courier pack.
  • You will need to contact the foreign diplomatic mission and enquire about their fees, arrangement for payment and return of documents.

You can use the contact details linked from the table below or consult with Telecom Directory Assistance. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade does not hold information on foreign diplomatic mission requirements or make enquiries on your behalf.

Fees:

  • NZ$65 for one authentication certificate  NZ$31 for each additional authentication certificate
  • This amount includes fees for both the Department Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Payment is to be made to the Department of Internal Affairs.

Algeria  Canberra (external link) 

Kenya  Canberra

Philippines  Wellington

Bangladesh  Canberra

Kiribati  Tarawa (external link)

Qatar  Canberra

Bolivia  Sydney 

Kuwait  Canberra

Saudi Arabia  Auckland

Cambodia  Canberra 

Laos  Canberra

Singapore  Wellington

Canada  Wellington

Lebanon  Canberra 

Solomon Islands  Honiara

China  Wellington

Malaysia  Wellington 

Sri Lanka  Wellington

Cuba  Wellington

Mali  Tokyo 

Sudan  Jakarta (external link)

Egypt  Wellington

Myanmar  Canberra 

Taiwan  Wellington (external link) 

Eritrea  Canberra (external link) 

Nauru

Thailand   Wellington 

Ghana  Canberra (external link) 

Nepal  Canberra

Tuvalu  Auckland 

Guatemala  Tokyo

Nicaragua  Tokyo (external link) 

United Arab Emirates  Wellington 

Indonesia  Wellington

Nigeria  Canberra 

Uzbekistan  Embassy Jakarta (external link) 

Iran  Wellington

Pakistan  Wellington

Viet Nam  Wellington

Jordan  Canberra

Papua New Guinea  Wellington

Yemen  Sydney (external link)

 

Paraguay  Tokyo 

Zambia  Tokyo

 

 

Zimbabwe  Canberra 

Category B - Countries that require the signature of a New Zealand Diplomatic Overseas Mission on an Authenticated document 

  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade verifies the signature and seal of the Department of Internal Affairs and forwards the documents to a New Zealand diplomatic overseas mission designated by the foreign country concerned. The New Zealand diplomatic overseas mission verifies the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s signature and seal and forwards the document to the foreign diplomatic overseas mission. The foreign diplomatic overseas mission verifies the New Zealand diplomatic overseas mission’s signature and seal and returns the authenticated documents to you by your self-addressed envelope or pre-paid international courier pack.
  • Please note that the fees below are for one document or set of documents. Further fees will be required for additional copies of documents. Please contact the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Consular Division, for advice of these additional fees.
  • You will need to contact the foreign diplomatic overseas mission and enquire about their fees, arrangement for payment and return of documents. The city underlined in the table below is your link for contact details for the foreign overseas mission which finally verifies your document. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade does not hold information on foreign diplomatic overseas mission requirements or make enquiries on your behalf.

Fees:

  • NZ$195 for one authentication certificate
  • NZ$61 for each additional authentication certificate

This amount includes fees for both the Department Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Payment is to be made to the Department of Internal Affairs.  

Afghanistan  Embassy Canberra (external link) 

Bahrain   Embassy London (external link) 

Benin  Embassy Paris (external link) 

Bhutan   Embassy India (external link) 

Burkina Faso   Embassy Brussels (external link) 

Burundi  Embassy Brussels (external link) 

Cameroon   Consulate Sydney (external link)

Central African Republic   Embassy Paris (external link) 

Chad  Embassy Brussels (external link) 

Democratic Republic of Congo    Embassy London (external link)

Equatorial Guinea  Embassy Paris (external link)

Ethiopia  Embassy Canberra (external link) 

Gabon  Consulate email contact Sydney 

Gambia   Embassy London (external link)

Guinea  Embassy Paris (external link)

Guinea-Bissau   Embassy Paris (external link) 

Guyana   High Commission London (external link) 

Haiti  Embassy Washington (external link)

Iraq  Embassy Canberra (external link)

Ivory Coast  Embassy London (external link) 

Jamaica  Consulate Sydney (external link) 

Libya   Embassy Canberra (external link)

Madagascar   Consulate Sydney (external link)

Mauritania   Embassy Paris (external link)

Niger   Emba (external link)ssy (external link) Paris (external link)

Rwanda  High Commission London (external link)

Senegal  Embassy London (external link) 

Sierra Leone  High Commission London (external link)

Syria  Embassy Sydney (external link)

Tajikistan   Email contact - Tajikistan Embassy Moscow 

Tanzania  Embassy Tokyo (external link)

Togo  Embassy Paris (external link)

Tunisia   Embassy Canberra (external link) 

Uganda   High Commission London (external link)