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How to properly get a Power of Attorney attested?

March 30, 2020

A Power of Attorney (or a POA in short) is an official document through which you can authorize persons or entities to act in your name. However, if you want the Power of Attorney to be recognized by all authorities internationally, you will need it attested.

What is attestation?

Attestation is a formal requirement for official documents, verifying that they are authentic.

When do you need attestation?

Not all documents need attestation. For example, in simpler cases, and when a document is to be used in Hungary while the place of signature is also in Hungary, it is usually enough to have 2 witnesses as well as the interested parties, whose relevant data are also to be indicated in the document.

When you open a Hungarian company as a foreign investor, and you are not coming to Hungary for the company formation procedure but want to authorize someone with a Power of Attorney, you will need the POA attested. This is because the document will cross borders, and you need authentication that is recognized in both countries.

How to get a POA attested?

You have several options for getting a Power of Attorney attested. The main element will always be that you have to sign the document in the presence of the attesting body.

Most popular methods for attestation:

  • Signing the POA in the presence of the Hungarian consul in your country of residence
  • Getting an apostille when signing the POA
  • Signing the POA in the presence of a notary, based on a bilateral agreement between Hungary and your country of residence

What is an apostille?

The Apostille Convention is an international treaty that lets you create certified documents that are recognized outside of your country of residence. The Apostille Convention has 117 member states, which are listed here.

In Hungary, you can get documents apostilled at public notaries and at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Bilateral agreements for attestation

Hungary observes bilateral agreements with many countries, which let documents attested by notaries in foreign countries to be recognized in Hungary. These bilateral agreements are signed with each country individually, so you can easily check whether your country of residence has one with Hungary in place.

Which method is best for you?

When you are setting up a Hungarian company with a Power of Attorney, make sure to ask your account manager which the best method is for you for getting documents attested. If you follow their advice, you will surely get things right.

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