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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.

Register foreign document

A life event that took place abroad must be included in the Municipal Personal Records Database (BRP). Examples include birth, marriage, death, divorce, acknowledgment, adoption or name change.

Requirements source documents

Is the source document not in Dutch, English, French or German? Then you have a translation made in the Netherlands by a sworn translator.

Is it a source document of a marriage?

In that case, in a number of cases you must bring a fully completed and signed declaration for registering a foreign document pursuant to Article 2.9 of the BRP Act. This concerns the following situations:

  • you or your partner do not have Dutch nationality
  • you or your partner do not have a permanent residence permit
  • you or your partner is not an EU national
  • A statement pursuant to Article 2.9 paragraph 1 of the BRP Act is not required if the marriage was concluded more than 10 years ago or has since ended.

Document may need to meet legalization requirements

Depending on the country where the source document was drawn up, the source document must comply with the legalization regulations. On the website of the national government you can see which regulations apply per country.

Bring to your appointment:

  • your valid ID
  • a copy of your partner's valid ID
  • the original foreign source document with any necessary legalization stamps
  • if necessary, a fully completed and signed Declaration ex Article 2.9 paragraph 1 Wet BRP
  • if necessary, a sworn translation of the source document into Dutch, German, English or French

If you want to register a foreign source document, please make an appointment.

Make an appointment

The registration of a foreign document is free of charge.

It takes a maximum of 4 months to have a foreign document converted into a Dutch document. Urgent requests are not possible.

Questions about this topic?

Contact the Municipality of Zwolle

Last updated on 22 September 2022