As the end of the year approaches, it is only normal for many Departments within the South African government (including DIRCO) to start closing up for the holidays. Here at Apostil.co.za, we offer a year-round document assistance service, but since some departments do close for the December holidays, it is essential to keep in mind that there might be delays in some processes.
DIRCO festive season closure dates
The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) will be closed from the 23rd of December 2021 and will reopen on the 3rd of January 2022. Any documents that are submitted to DIRCO after the 20th of November 2021 will only be processed and finalized in the new year.
Slowing of apostille services at DIRCO during 2021
DIRCO used to apostille or authenticate documentation either the same day, in 2 days, or at most in 5 days, however during 2021 and 2022 this has slowed to a snail-paced 4-8 weeks.
DIRCO has also implemented an appointment system, meaning that no walk-ins are allowed any longer.
Literally, obtaining an apostille at DIRCO is now easiest through a company such as Apostil.co.za, where we have at least two and sometimes three appointments every week.
Which documents require apostillisation at DIRCO?
If you plan on using legal documents outside of South Africa, you’ll have to get them apostilled at the DIRCO in Pretoria, in order to ensure their validity.
Documents generally requiring apostilles from DIRCO include:
Home Affairs documents and Police Clearances:
- Police Clearance Certificates
- Marriage Certificates
- Birth Certificates
- Death Certificates
- Letters of No Impediment
- SA Degrees and Diploma certificates (academic apostille at SAQA and DIRCO)
- Health certificates (medical apostille at HPCSA and DIRCO)
What about other documents?
Documents where the stamp and signature thereupon are not from government officials cannot be apostilled by DIRCO. The only way to “apostille” these documents is to have a notary stamp and sign a copy of the original, and to have the notary’s stamp and signature apostilled by the High Court where they are registered.
High Court apostille documents:
- Divorce Decrees
- Background Checks
- Single Status Affidavit or any Affidavit
- Power of Attorney
- Copies of a Passport or any document
- Authorisation Letter
- Travel Consent Letter
- Articles of Incorporation
- Certification of Free Sale
- Certificate of Origin
- Corporate Power of Attorney
- Commercial Invoices
Notice to all our clients
If you need to have any of the documents listed above apostilled for legal use abroad, we strongly suggest getting in touch with us as soon as possible. We can submit your applications to DIRCO before the festive season break and ensure that you receive them in the fastest time possible.