What is legalization?
Legalizing a document makes it appropriate for use in another country.
Legalization indicates that:
- the document was issued by an official authority
- the signature, seal and/or stamp on the document are genuine
- the document’s format is correct.
In some countries, the official International Baccalaureate (IB) certificates will not be valid until they are legalized in Geneva, Switzerland, by the relevant embassy or consulate.
Generally, the IB Diploma/Career-related Programme results documents are the documents needing legalization. However, you can request for the IB Diploma/Career-related Programme certificates or course results documents to be legalized if necessary.
There are two categories of countries that require legalization, as follows.
- Countries requiring the “Apostille” stamp only. A single Apostille stamp is valid for all the countries that are signatories of The Hague Apostille Convention.
- Countries requiring legalization through their consulates, as these countries are not signatories of the Apostille Convention.
How can I request the legalization of my official IB certificate?
Some countries request that the IB Diploma/Career-related programme results document is legalized in Geneva (Switzerland) by the relevant chancellery, embassy and/or consulate for entrance to universities.
Students currently studying in an IB World School
- Your IB programme coordinator must inform candidates about this legalization requirement and submit a request to the IB on your behalf.
- The IB will only accept requests coming from schools; if you are certain that you will need your IB certificate to be legalized for university entrance purposes, speak to your programme coordinator.
- If six months have passed since the issue of your IB results, you can make a legalization request yourself via the IB request for results service form.
- Provide your full name, date of birth, the IB school’s name where you graduated and the country of the university you are applying to.
- Legalization is determined by the country of the university and not the graduate’s residency or nationality.
- The university you are applying to will be able to advise you if they require the IB certification to be legalized.
- Generally, the official IB Diploma/Career-related Programme results documents are the documents that require legalization (documents showing the subjects/grades). Occasionally, the IB Diploma/Career-related Programme certificates (documents showing the candidate’s and school’s names) will also be required. The university must tell you what they need.
- When submitting a legalization request, you will be charged a fee for each document to be legalized; the fee is the same for all types of documents.
Note: If you have lost your original certificate, you will need to select the option Replacement IB certification and Legalization on the IB request for results service form. As these are two different services, you will be charged for the two: replacement and legalization.
How do I make a payment for the legalization service?
You will be required to make a payment for legalization services when submitting an order using the IB request for results service form.
My university is asking for a legalized IB results document; however, I have lost my original certificate. What can I do?
- Access the IB request for results service form.
- Select Replacement IB certification and Legalization.
This will provide you with a legalized replacement copy of your IB certification.
You will be charged for the two services: replacement and legalization.
Which countries require the legalization of IB results documents?
Legalization of the IB official certification is determined by the university location.
The IB recommends students to contact the university to which they are applying to find out:
- whether they university requires legalization of IB certification
- which documents the university is requesting to be legalized (results document only or both results document and IB Diploma/Career-related Programme certificates).
I urgently need my certificate to be legalized. Can the IB expedite the process?
The IB does not provide a priority service for legalization.
The process relies on third-party organizations outside of the UK to obtain the legalization stamps.
I am applying to an Italian university. What does the legalization of certificates for Italy consist of?
Graduates awarded the IB Diploma
Legalization for Italy requires:
- the Apostille stamp of the IB Diploma results document
- the “declaration of value” (DoV) issued by the Italian consulate in Geneva (Switzerland).
Graduates not awarded the IB Diploma
The legalization consists of getting the Apostille stamp on the Diploma Programme Course Results document.
The Italian consulate will not issue the DoV to graduates that have not been awarded the IB Diploma.
- The legalization process is managed through the legalization service of the IB in Cardiff, who will automatically obtain the DoV from the Italian consulate in Geneva, unless otherwise specified by the graduate.
- Graduates may obtain the DoV from their own Italian consulate if they wish.
- The list of IB schools recognized by the Ministry of Education in Italy > Allegati > Allegato 2 > look for the “BACCELLIERATO INTERNAZIONALE (IB)” section.
I have lost my original certificate/my original certificate is damaged; how do I request a replacement certificate?
Students studying in an IB World School
- Certificates will arrive at your school by the end of September (May session) or end of March (November session).
- You can only request a replacement certificate if six months has passed since the issue of your results on the IB request for results service form.
- Before six months have passed, any replacement requests must be made by your IB programme coordinator.
- IB graduates can request replacement certificates after six months of results being issued.
- Replacement certificates can only be requested if the original has been lost or destroyed.
- To submit a request, complete the online IB request for results service form.
- You will need to submit proof of identity by forwarding a document that includes both your name and date of birth (passport, driving licence, etc.)
- The process will take up to 28 days.
Note: If the reason you are requesting a replacement certificate is because your name has changed since graduation:
- if six months has passed since the issue of results, contact the IB via firstname.lastname@example.org to request the change of name. You will be charged for this request
- before six months have passed, contact your programme coordinator.