London’s Same-Day Apostille Has Ended: Here’s How In-house Mobility Teams Can Adapt

The recent closure of London’s same-day or premium service for apostille legalization — official stamps legalizing documents for international use —  was unwelcome news, particularly for those accustomed to swift turnaround. Indeed, apostilles are critical in facilitating international mobility and transactions, and London is a known hub, dealing with an estimated 140,000 of the 550,000 apostilles issued annually in the UK.


Though the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) is still continuing to process the apostille in London, the rise in efficiency of their standard service has contributed to the decision that the £2,000,000 cost of running the same-day apostille service would be better spent elsewhere, especially with a decrease in overall demand. 


Of course, this is undoubtedly inconvenient for those relying on that quick turnaround, and many businesses are concerned about how this will affect tight deadlines and costs. But, with good planning, this shouldn’t spell disaster for your document legalization needs. 


In this article we will discuss the new apostille process in the UK and how you can plan ahead to ensure your legalization processes are carried out as smoothly as possible. Let’s jump in.



Apostille changes don’t need to halt business 

Whether you are relocating or carrying out business abroad, there are many reasons why you may need an apostilled document. An apostille is a stamp or certificate that’s attached to a required document after it’s been notarized. This means it has been signed by a notary in order to make it legal, and the apostille confirms the authenticity of the signature, stamp, or seal of the public official on the document. While it is a relatively quick process compared to legalization


While this service’s closure is beyond anyone’s control, this shift underscores the importance of a strategic immigration and business travel document management plan, which can be easily facilitated by working with an expert third-party service.


Expert legalization and apostille service providers offer valuable solutions amidst changing immigration and documentation landscapes. By leveraging an experienced team with feet on the ground and established relationships with embassies and government offices around the world, documentation partners can navigate the intricacies of apostille regulations and procedures, ensuring smooth and swift document validation overall.


This can streamline documentation authentication processes, minimizing dependence on last-minute requests. Of course, if an urgent request does arise, your documentation partner is best placed to explore alternative options and resources to minimize delays and maintain operations.


While same-day apostilles provided undeniable convenience, relying solely on this option could leave businesses vulnerable to unforeseen disruptions. By embracing a comprehensive document management strategy, businesses can take a strategic approach in an evolving legalization landscape.



How to keep on top of immigration documentation needs with a third party provider

Understanding the critical role of timely document authentication in maintaining smooth business operations and meeting important deadlines is key within the immigration and business travel context. Meticulous planning and proactive communication, especially when high-level executives or other white-glove relocations are in play, even simple things like ensuring your paperwork arrives precisely when needed, translations are done if necessary, etc., eliminates the stress of last-minute scrambles.


So, while the lack of same-day service may initially seem like a hurdle, it’s an opportunity to move beyond quick fixes by partnering with an immigration document provider that will help you proactively manage your immigration document needs, build resilience against unforeseen disruptions, and develop a robust internal strategy.



Lex Documents can help you manage global authentication and apostille of documents 

At LEX Documents, we accompany you throughout the process of authenticating or apostilling documents as well as document procurement and translation.


We have offices and staff across Europe, North America, and Latin America with expertise in international administration and local and international document management for immigration and global mobility needs. 


Our strategically located team, including a dedicated office in the UK, understands the nuances of international regulations and apostille procedures. This means we can also identify alternative solutions when unexpected delays arise. This ensures your documents receive swift and accurate processing, regardless of their destination.

Don’t hesitate to contact our experts to help you stay on top of your documentation needs!

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