In its bid to improve the process of handling public documents, the Philippine government, through the Department of Foreign Affairs, recently announced some changes regarding the process of handling legal documents via its embassies and consular posts. On May 14, the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (Apostille Convention) was adopted in the Philippines.
The said changes are expected to provide expedited services regarding the processing and handling of public documents issued overseas and from the Philippines.
[UPDATE] Embassy Stops Use of Red Ribbon on Public Documents
Here’s the statement from the PH Embassy in Singapore website:
EMBASSY ADVISORY | On the removal of the Red Satin Ribbon on All Legal Documents
Effective 15 June 2019, pursuant to the instruction of the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila, the Philippine Embassy in Singapore will no longer use the red satin ribbon on legal documents submitted for authentication or notarization.
However, all legal documents authenticated or notarized by the Philippine Embassy in Singapore will continue to carry the gold embossed seal of the Philippine Embassy and to be secured by an eyelet.
For further inquiry, please email the Philippine Embassy in Singapore at email@example.com.
In line with this, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will no longer issue Authentication Certificates with “red ribbon”; instead, an Apostille will now be affixed to documents for use abroad as proof of authentication, as shared in a report by the Philippine Information Agency.
In essence, the Apostille Convention will make the processing of papers among Apostille-contracting countries, simpler and more convenient on the part of applicants, as there will be no need for the Philippine Embassy to issue an Authorization Certificate (red ribbon) for public documents acquired overseas to be used in the Philippines.
In the same manner, Philippine public documents do not need to undergo diplomatic or consular authentication in order to be used abroad in fellow Apostille-contracting countries.
However, in non-Apostille contracting countries such as Singapore, the process will still be the same, only without the physical issuance of a red satin ribbon on public documents.
Nonetheless, all legal documents authenticated or notarized by the Philippine Embassy in Singapore will continue to carry the gold embossed seal of the Philippine Embassy and to be secured by an eyelet.
Here is a list of countries that have adopted the Apostille Convention, as per update from the Department of Foreign Affairs:
GOODBYE RED RIBBON, HELLO APOSTILLE!
Effective today, the DFA will no longer issue Authentication Certificates with “red ribbon”, and will instead affix an Apostille to documents for use abroad.
— DFA Philippines (@DFAPHL) May 14, 2019
Watch this short video shared by the DFA via their YouTube Channel to explain the new change in the document processing for travel overseas:
Aside from countries that are not yet covered by the Apostille Convention, the Philippine Apostille will also not apply to Austria, Finland, Germany and Greece. As per guidelines, documents from and to such countries will still require legalization by their Embassy or Consulate in the Philippines.
For further inquiry and other related concerns, you may reach out to the Philippine Embassy in Singapore via e-mail.