How to Easily Obtain MEA Apostille on Educational Documents for Study Visa?
Here at MovBeans, we are writing a series of articles to assist you with your documents for your Italy student visa. And this marks the second and the most important part of the document legalization process. In the first article we showed you the efficient way to get your documents HRD attested by Punjab Educational Board. Now, let's dive into the process of obtaining MEA Apostille for your attested documents.
Now MEA Apostille can only be obtained in the educational documents which are HRD attested, and if you've followed the steps outlined in the previous article, then the first part of your document legalization process has been completed. Now, for the next and final part, you would have to get your documents apostilled by MEA (Ministry of External Affairs).
WHAT IS THE NEED FOR MEA APOSTILLE ON EDUCATIONAL DOCUMENTS?
Now, you must be thinking, why do we need such apostille; isn't HRD attestation enough? Well, you see, India has been a member of the Hague Convention since 2005, and this convention effectively eliminated the need for further legalization of foreign public documents. An apostille from a member country, including India, is valid and accepted in all other member-countries. Therefore, if your document has been apostilled in India, it should be considered legally valid for all purposes in countries like Italy or Germany, and this relieves you of the need for additional attestation or legalization. So, if you have plans to travel to another country that's also a member of this convention, getting your documents apostilled is essential.
STEPS TO GET EDUCATIONAL DOCUMENTS APOSTILLED BY MEA
1. Apostille for 10th and 12th marksheets or documents stored in DigiLocker
If you're looking to legalize your 10th or 12th certificates or any documents stored in DigiLocker, you can do so online via the E-Sanad platform. For more information about this service, please visit this link.
2. Apostille for Bachelor's or Master's Degree and Transcripts
However, when it comes to apostilling your Bachelor's or Master's Degree, this must be done through offline channels. But you cannot directly visit the MEA office and ask them to verify your documents, because similar to foreign embassies, the MEA has designated government-approved outsource agencies to facilitate this process. You'll need to submit your documents to these agencies, and they will handle the entire apostille procedure for you.
There are four major agencies, with offices and centers located in some major cities across India. To find an agency near your location, please refer to this link.
I personally opted for IVS GLOBAL SERVICES, and they efficiently apostilled my documents and delivered them to my home. However, you have the flexibility to choose any agency from the approved list, as most of them follow the same procedures.
Once you've acquired HRD attestation on your documents, your next step is to visit an agency center. Here, you will need to submit the original documents along with a photocopy of your passport. The agency will inquire about your destination country, so be prepared to provide this information. Additionally, most agencies also offer a courier service, and you can opt for to have your documents delivered to your doorstep.
Usually, it will take one day for the agency to prepare your documents. However, in some cases, this process may extend to 2-3 days due to various reasons. After submitting your documents, wait for a few days, and you will soon receive your legalized academic degree and transcript. And now your educational documents are successfully ready for the VISA or the DoV Process.
I have also included a picture of MEA Apostille in the following for your reference purpose:
In conclusion, by following the steps detailed in this article, you have successfully navigated the process of obtaining MEA Apostille on your educational documents. These legalized documents are now ready to be submitted for DoV (Declaration of Value) or Student Visa Process. So, now you have completed a major task and are one step closer to achieving your academic aspirations and study on foreign grounds. We hope both these articles have been helpful in making your document legalization and student visa process smoother and more accessible. If you ever have questions or need further assistance, don't hesitate to reach out to us. Best of luck with your endeavors and thanks for reading.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs) ABOUT MEA APOSTILLE?
1. Is getting MEA Apostille on Documents completely free of cost?
No, unlike HRD Attestation, MEA Apostille isn't free. You would have to pay money to secure the apostille on your documents. Your documents are processed through an agency, which then sends them to the Ministry of External Affairs for apostillation, and once it's done, the documents are reverted back to the agency, and all these procedures are bound to incur some costs.
2. How much would be the total cost of MEA Apostille?
The cost varies from agency to agency, but IVS Global Services charged me approximately 135 Rupees per page, plus the scanning charges. In total it cost me 745 INR to get my Degree and Transcripts (Total 5 Pages) apsotilled. The courier service would incur additional cost.
3. What are the documents required for obtaining MEA Apostille?
You just need to submit the original documents where you want to secure the Apostille, a copy (Xerox) of your passport, and that's it.