Our offices are located directly opposite the front of Charing Cross Station at: Golden Cross House, 8 Duncannon Street, London, WC2N 4JF View in Maps

“URGENT Same Day Speed” Apostille Legalisation Service

After giving decades of invaluable and dedicated quality services, the U.K. government’s central-London based Premium Legalisation Office for “same day” speed Apostille Legalisation, sadly closed in December 2023, as part of a government costs cutting exercise.

From 02 January 2024 an alternative but heavily limited and restricted “Urgent same day speed” legalisation service now exists.

An urgent application must firstly be pleaded for approval to the Legislation Office, before an application can be made.

For urgent cases, at your request we will make written submissions for “Urgent same day speed” Apostille, to the Legalisation Office for you.

According to the Legalisation Office rules, any written submissions made by us, must be submitted before 4pm, on the previous working day.

Please note the “Urgent same day speed” Apostille Legalisation process is heavily restricted, and any written submissions for same day speed Apostille are not guaranteed of success.

The Legalisation Office application criteria for “same day speed Apostille” requires us to supply supporting evidence of the urgency.


“Urgent Same day speed” Apostille Legalisation applications are limited to the following situations:

✔ Documents linked to repatriation that are clearly time-sensitive

✔ Time-limited documents linked to transport of animals

✔ Documents with evidence relating to the welfare of a child

✔ Documents with evidence relating to the welfare of a vulnerable adult

✔ Commercially urgent documents, for example; certificates relating to insolvency searches

✔ Documents relating to corporate transactions with a specified completion date

✔ Short notice private client documents


A key difference of the new “Urgent same day speed” Apostille Legalisation service is that prior approval by the Legalisation Office, to the making of an application is required, before any “Urgent same day speed” application can be attempted.

Generally the U.K. government’s Legalisation Office need to be satisfied that the Next-Day Apostille Legalisation service, cannot meet the urgent requirements of your case, before they will approve, “Urgent Same day speed” Apostille Legalisation.




legalisation department

Alternatively, we also offer a cheaper “NEXT WORKING DAY” Legalisation turnaround service at the Milton Keynes Legalisation Office, which works as follows.

A courier from our offices takes your documentation by hand from our offices, to the Milton Keynes branch of the Legalisation Office of the Foreign Office.

Our courier then collects, by hand, your documentation the following working day in the afternoon and returns your document(s) to our offices by 4pm on the collection day

In order to obtain NEXT DAY Apostille/Legalisation, the latest you would be able to attend our offices, is 11am on a working day.

Once 11am has passed, we would no longer be able to obtain your Apostille Legalisation with NEXT DAY speed.

Legalisation by Post

We tend to advise against using the Milton Keynes Legalisation Office postal service for Legalisation which has previously proved very slow and can potentially take over two weeks. We only supply the faster speeds of business Apostille Legalisation services.

Consular Legalisation

We can also obtain Consular Legalisation for you from any of the London Consulates.

We are expert and experienced in all of the procedures of all of the London Consulates e.g. application processes, documentary requirements, fees, time scales, public holidays, recent amendments.

Whatever your Legalisation requirements and whatever your level of urgency or budget, we endeavour to provide a service to satisfy your requirements within the fastest achievable time scales.

What is Legalisation?

Legalisation is a process by which the identity and authority of the notary public is verified and certified, by the country or State, in which the notary public is duly authorised to practice.

At a specific level the term Legalisation, is used to describe the attachment of the Apostille stamp, that is issued by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), in accordance with The Hague Convention 1961.

The Apostille stamp is also sometimes described as the Hague stamp.

The term Legalisation is used on a general level to describe the process of certifying a legal document so that a foreign jurisdiction will recognize the document as being legally valid and as having full legal effect in their jurisdiction.

Practically speaking, the certification is made by the Legalisation department at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) who will attach a unique certificate to the document and impress the Foreign Office stamp into a document.

In the context of a document certified or witnessed by a notary public, an Apostille is the certificate issued by the FCO confirming the signature and Stamp of the notary, verifying that the notary concerned in a genuine and practicing notary.


What is Consular Legalisation?

Even after Legalisation by the Foreign Office, certain jurisdictions will require the document to be additionally certified by their own Consulate in London. 

In these cases your document would need to pass firstly to the Foreign Office and then subsequently be passed to the relevant Consulate. Every Consulate has a different fee which must be paid (in addition to the Foreign Office fee of £30 or £75 depending on which level of service you require). 

How long does Consular Legalisation take?

As well as having different fees the Consulates all have different turnaround times which vary form the same day services to along as 1-2 weeks depending on the Consulate.

Particular Arab jurisdictions have a requirement for legalisation to be made through the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce known as the “ABCC”.

Our Legalisation and Consular services

CONSULAR LEGALISATIONWe are pleased to obtain Legalisation at the Foreign Office and/or any London Consulate on your behalf. 

As well as additional fees at the Foreign Office and the Consulate there will be additional fees payable to the Notary for arranging this service. The notary will supply you with a full quote in advance of any instruction as well as give you an estimate of time scales for the return of the document to you.

We can also arrange for your document to be speedily couriered to an international destination of your choice once the Legalisation process has been completed.

Can I obtain Legalisation on a weekend?

No – neither the Foreign Office or any of the London Consulates open on weekends and it is only possible to obtain Legalisation or Consularisation on a working day, outside of public holidays (and often other national or religious holidays relating to the country which the Consulate represents). 

Also for the same day Fast Legalisation service from the Foreign Office we must receive your document no later than 2pm on the day you require the legalisation completed.

What are the fees and time scales of the different London Consulates?

Please see our Consular Legalisation Section


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