Justice Minister Introduces Apostille Convention

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Jamaica News: Justice Minister Delroy Chuck this afternoon introduced to Parliament the Authentication (Foreign Public Documents) Bill 2020, which will simplify the authentication process of local documents intended for use overseas and of foreign documents intended for use in Jamaica.

Local documents, such as birth, marriage and death certificates; decrees for the dissolution of marriage; excerpts from official public records and registers; and medical and health certificates, are among the documents which can be authenticated under the Bill.

“When this Bill is made into law, and we join the Hague Convention Abolishing the requirement of Legalization of   Foreign Public Documents, commonly known as The Apostille Convention, locals and foreigners undertaking business with Jamaica will be able to conduct their business transactions in a more transparent, simple and timely manner,” the Justice Minister emphasised.

Generally, a public document that is intended for use in a foreign country is required to be verified. If the recipient in the foreign country is not familiar with the official capacity of the signee or the identity of the seal or stamp it bears, there is need for legalization.

“There are currently 118 members of the Apostille Convention. Documents from Jamaica will be accepted as valid from all members once they bear the Apostille certificate,” Minister Chuck noted.

In the same vein, documents from those countries will be accepted as valid following approval from Jamaica’s Apostille Registry.

It is proposed that the Competent Authority in Jamaica for the authentication of the public documents should be the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade.

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