Our Korean lawyers at our law firm in Korea receive numerous emails requesting our services in assisting with either legalization of a Korean translation for use in court, authentication, notarization or apostille of a Korean, Chinese, American, British, French, German, Russian or other country document for either use in Korea or use in another country.
We, normally, receive these calls from fellow attorneys, a financial institution or an individual with the need for an important document to be “legalized” for an important transaction. Many times these documents are required for foreign or Korean courts, administrative agencies and quasi-government institutions. Usually, the person contacting us believes the procedure shall take a trivial amount of time.
Usually the party contacting us believes that we can just stamp the document and the matter is complete. We wish things were so easy.
Often getting documents recognized by a Korean government entity or recognized by a foreign government entity requires much more than a mere stamp and prayer. Normally, it requires one of our Korean attorneys or Korean speaking international attorneys or staff to understand the specific intended use of the document and requires this individual to contact the respective government entity that shall require the document. In many cases, the document that is believed necessary is not the only document necessary.
We, also, often need to coordinate the notarization and appostille process with the individual. Yes – seems like all a waste of time. However, in civil law systems, these type procedures are intended to be official and important government or quasi-government functions. Thus . . . time.
Please when attempting to “legalize” a document avoid wasting your time and get someone that will take the time and the effort to do the work necessary to help to insure that the document is recognized by authority that you need it recognized by.
Sean’s profile may be found at: Sean C. Hayes
Known for his street-smart advice & proactive advocacy. Sean works with senior retired Korean judges and leading attorneys in contentious and transactional matters. First non-Korean lawyer (NY) to work at Korean Courts and one of the first non-Korean law professors. Rated a top lawyer in Korea by major rating agencies.
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