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Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland

How to legalize a document - Embassy of Finland, Abuja : Services : Legalization of documents


9 Iro Dan Musa Street, Asokoro, Abuja, Nigeria
Visas, residence permits only: +234 (0) 81 7245 46 44 (Mon-Thu, 1 pm – 4 pm)
Visa, residence permit and legalization e-mail:
General Line: +234 (0) 803 785 1150 (office hours)
General e-mail:
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How to legalize a document

The following instructions concern all applications for the legalization of documents of Nigerian or other West African origin, such as marriage certificates, birth certificates and bachelorhood/spinsterhood certificates. From 1 June 2015 the legalization done by other Nordic countries in the region are not accepted by the Finnish authorities anymore.

The Embassy of Finland can only legalize original documents which have first been legalized (authenticated) by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the country of origin of the document.

A request for legalization of a document should be sent via e-mail to with the required copies as pdf-attachments to the e-mail.

Please include the following information in your e-mail:

a)    Scanned copies of the bio data page of the passports of all concerned parties (husband & wife in case of marriage certificate, children & parents in case of birth certificate and fiancé & fiancée in case of spinsterhood/bachelorhood certificate). Power of attorney must be provided in case another person, than the person to whom the document belongs to, is in contact with the Embassy regarding the legalization matter.

b)    Scanned copies of both sides of the original document(s), which is/are to be legalized. The original(s) must first be legalized at the Foreign Ministry of the originating country. The signature and seal of the authorized officer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the country of origin of the document must be clearly visible. Please note that affidavits or photocopies of the original documents will not be legalized.

c)    Return address in Finland (postage fee 10.50 €). If the document will be sent to an address overseas, the customer is responsible for the collection from the Embassy and the fees charged for that.

d)    A covering letter stating the purpose of the required legalization of the document(s).

When the Embassy of Finland has approved the document(s) for legalization, further instructions regarding the process, sending of the original document(s) and payment instructions will be sent via e-mail to the customer. Kindly notice that the usual lengt of legalization process is minimum 2-3 months from the acceptance of document for the process. Processing time can vary depending on case. NOTE: Original documents should not be sent to the Embassy and fees should not be paid until the payment instructions have been sent by the Embassy.

Legalizing  a document is a twofold process:

After the legalization fee is paid and confirmed by the Embassy's bank, the Embassy will send an email instructing the customer to send the original papers to VFS Global.

1)    VFS Global investigates and verifies the origin of the document. VFS Global charges the customer a fee for the verification of a document. Please see the instructions and the tariff on the website: The customer is liable for all verification charges.

NB: The work of VFS Global is independent, and the Embassy of Finland cannot interfere in the verification process or the fees charged. Kindly approach VFS Global with all the inquiries related to verification.

2)    After VFS Global delivers the documents to the Embassy, the Embassy will continue the legalization process based on the report from verification. Legalized document(s) are then returned to the address provided in the legalization request. In case of a change of address during the course of legalization, kindly notify the Embassy.

All documents to be legalized by the Embassy of Finland must first be verified by VFS Global.

The Embassy of Finland charges 30 € for the legalization of each document + 10.50 € postage fee. Kindly ensure that your payment option carries the possible transfer costs and allows the fees to be received by the Embassy in full.

Payment instructions

The legalization fee should be paid to the Embassy's bank account following these instructions. It is important to fill in the banks information correctly. Inadequate reference numbers will slow the process down. Please note that Nigeria does not use IBAN system and all banks may not forward payments to Nigeria. No payment should be made to Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland's bank account. Kindly note that the Embassy cannot accept payments from Small World, Western Union or other financial institutions, whose payments do not show the customer's name on the Embassy's bank statement.


Embassy of Finland




Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria Limited

Plot 374, Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent, Wuse II, FCT, Abuja, Nigeria

+234 (9) 461 2665

Account number:

NGN- account:              0001449729      Naira-payments

EUR-account:               0001449736      Euro-payments



Message for receiver:

Legalization fee, name of the customer  (Nigeria/or country of origin of the document)

 (Name of the customer refers to the person whose documents are being legalized not to the payer).

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Updated 5/23/2018

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