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Registering a foreign document in the Netherlands

Do you have a foreign document, such as a birth certificate, a death certificate or divorce documents? If you are a citizen of the Netherlands or a refugee with a temporary asylum residence permit (statushouder) you must register it with the municipality where you live.

Most documents from the European Union (EU) are automatically valid in the Netherlands. You can register these documents with your municipality.

The municipality records these documents in the Personal Records Database (Basisregistratie Personen – BRP). In other cases, you will first need to have your document translated and then legalised.

Is your document in English, French or German? Then you do not need to have your deed translated.

Is your document in another language? Then you need to have your document translated into Dutch before registering it. You must have your document translated by a sworn translator in the Netherlands. Was your document translated outside the Netherlands? Then you will need to have the translation of your document legalised.

Do you think you will need a copy of your document at a later date? Then you can choose to have your foreign document converted into an official Dutch document (akte) at the municipality of Den Haag (The Hague). This can make it easier for you if you need an official copy (afschrift) while resident in the Netherlands. Converting your foreign document to a Dutch document is not compulsory.

This is how it works for you

Your (future) place of residence falls under:

Here is some information from your municipality.

Municipality of Rotterdam: Registering a foreign document

Please note: you can register a foreign document only if you live in the Netherlands and are registered with a municipality.

Do you want to register a foreign document? You must book an appointment with the municipality in order to do so.

By telephone 

To book an appointment call our municipal service number 14 010. When you call from abroad, call +31 10 267 16 25.


On the webpage Buitenlandse documenten registreren you van book an appointment online.

You must bring the following documents to the appointment:

  • the original document;
  • your passport and/or identity card (or a copy thereof);
  • an official translation of the document by a sworn translator; this is only necessary if the document is not in Dutch, English, German or French.

Are you having a document legalised for someone else? If so, you will also need an authorisation form [link to form].

Document entered in the municipality’s BRP

The municipality will then enter your document in the Basisregistratie Personen – BRP (Personal Records Database).

Having a document converted into a Dutch document

Do you wish to have your document converted into an official Dutch document? If so, you must first register your foreign document with the municipality in which you are registered. The municipality will enter the document in the BRP. You can then have the document converted into a Dutch document in the municipality of Den Haag.

To do this, make an appointment with the municipality of Den Haag.

The registration of a foreign document is free of charge.

It takes 3 to 6 weeks to have a foreign document converted into a Dutch document. If further research is neccessary, it could take longer. You will learn the estimated time during your appointment.

Questions about this topic?

Contact the Municipality of Rotterdam

Last updated on 22 September 2022