The Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (the “Apostille Convention”) will come into effect in Canada on 11 January 2024.
Canada’s accession to the Apostille Convention is significant as it will greatly simplify the process for having Canadian public documents legally certified for use in many countries. The current burdensome process of authentication and legalization in Canada will soon be replaced by the issuance of a single certificate of authenticity or “apostille”, provided the destination country is one of the 125 countries that are contracting states to the Apostille Convention. It is anticipated that this will save significant time and expense in the IP context, where documents for use in foreign filings frequently require authentication and legalization.
In general, documents that are currently required to be legalized will be eligible for an apostille after the Apostille Convention comes into force. So far, four provinces (including the Ministry of the Attorney General of British Columbia) and the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development have been designated as competent authorities to issue apostilles in Canada. More information about the specific process required to obtain an apostille in Canada is anticipated later this year.
More information is available here: https://www.canada.ca/en/global-affairs/news/2023/05/canada-joins-apostille-convention-to-facilitate-use-of-public-documents-abroad.html