Death Certificate Apostille - South Africa

Many people will get some form of inheritance at some point in their lives, but this gets complicated when you the estate is in a foreign country

In South Africa, Death Certificates are issued under The South African Births and Deaths Registration Act 51 of 1992, It is a document issued by the Government to the nearest relatives of the deceased, stating the date, fact and cause of death. It is essential to register death to prove the time and date of death, to establish the fact of death for relieving the individual from social, legal and official obligations. They are also used by the government to track vital statistics on the population.

There are several reasons why you may need to obtain a death certificate. Most often, Death certificates serve as proof of an official death for legal purposes and are used to close the Estate of the deceased. Death Certificates may need an apostille when an overseas authority has requested a copy of the document. Indeed, following the death of your loved one, you may find overseas organisations including government bodies, courts and solicitors request a copy of the death certificate. This may be to register the death, make a claim on a pension, to resolve the deceased’s estate or to sell a property. Without an apostille the death certificate may not be accepted. In addition you may need to get a copy of the will or the letter of executorship documents translated and legalised by apostille.


Apostille Document Requirements

In South Africa, apostille certificate can be affixed on  original document or on a notarised copy. Therefore, the document must be presented in good condition, with all stamps and signatures clear and readable. Additionally, the documents must be free of alien markings or labels.

Certain documents, such as police clearance certificates must be recent for obvious reasons. This may also apply to marriage certificates and other documents representing a current status of the people represented in the certificate.

Death certificate apostille-pretoria-johannesburg-capetown-durban

9 Frequently Asked Questions About Apostille In South Africa

Gathering the proper paperwork to get  an apostille in South Africa can be confusing. We understand that working with the government and the all necessary paperwork can feel overwhelming. But don’t worry; we are here to answer your questions regarding the apostille process. We are asked a lot of questions and wanted to share some with you

The Apostille  certificate is an official government issued certificate attached to public documents so these documents can be valid for use internationally. The Apostille was introduced as an alternative to the old and long legalization process through The Hague Convention of October 5, 1961.  

It is an intergovernmental convention which set about establishing a simplified system to allow documentation originating in one member country to be easily recognized as authentic in another member country. The norms were established at The Hague Convention of 6 October 1961.

As a general rule of thumb, apostille certificates are necessary when a document from one country has to be used in another country’s legal proceedings. For example, you may be a citizen of South Africa who is seeking residency in a European country like France. In order to get the residency status you want, you may need an apostilled version of your South African birth certificate to prove your identity.

Any country that is a member of the Hague Convention will accept an apostille certificate from South Africa without further legalisation.

In South Africa, Apostilles certificates  are provided by the South African High Courts and the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) located in Pretoria.

If you apply for our standard service we can legalise your document in 2-4 working days. We also offer a same day- Express apostille service. Read about it here

  • High Court Apostille : R 650.00 per document
  • Translation + Apostille: R 850.00 per document

When legalising a South African issued death certificate we recommend having the apostille issued on the Unabridged death certificate. The Unabridged death certificate is the document that contains all the information and is generally requested by most overseas authorities rather than the Unabridged version. However, this is ultimately your preference and we are
able to legalise either the Abridged or Unabridged death certificate.

In most cases, yes. Depending on the document, you may need an original sent to us or there are times we can work with a copy. But it is usually not a problem to receive your apostille on a South African document, no matter where in the world you are located.

Global-Apostille offer fast, efficient and seamless service to meet your expectation. Client confidentiality as paramount and endeavour to provide a first class service to our clients. To find out more about our fast and reliable document legalisation service.
Contact us at:


+27 12 348 3134


+27 81 347 6060


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Death Certificate -  Apostille Service
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Death Certificate - Apostille Service
Death Certificates may need an apostille when an overseas authority has requested a copy of the document. Following the death of a loved one, you may find overseas organisations including government bodies, courts, and solicitors requesting a copy of the death certificate.
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Global Apostille
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