Requirements to a photo
It must be possible to identify a person on the basis of a photo univocally.
- A person must be depicted at a photo:
- en face,
- having neutral expression and closed mouth,
- without headgear,
- with eyes open and look has to be directed towards camera lens.
- It has to be a colour photo, by size of 40 x 50 mm.
- Area between chin and top of head must form 70-80% of the vertical height of the photo.
- Glasses are allowed, if eyes are not covered by spectacle frames and there are no “gleams of light” from reflection of glasses.
- Photo has to be taken within 6 months before submitting an application.
- Hair may not cover face nor cause shades on face.
- Photo may not have fingerprints, scratches or any other defects on it.
- Colour gamma of the photo must have natural spectre (may not be overexposed nor underexposed).
- Background of the photo must be flat, mono-colour, of bright colour (commendatory colours are light blue, beige, light brown, light grey or white) and in contrast with colour of face and hair.
- Red-eye effect on the photo is not allowed are also its removal by means of the software is forbidden.
More detailed requirements set to the photo can be found in Government of the Republic of Estonia regulation.
Proportions of the taken photos can be compared by means of a template that can be found here. By printing of the template, we ask not to change the scale.
The document photo can be taken in the majority of Service Offices with the exception of Otepää and Elva.
Photo taken in a photo booth is digital and it can be used in all Service Offices, by applications sent by post or by e-mail within 14 days.
Photo can be taken in photo booth of the Service Office free of charge.
By applying for a document for a child being below the age of three years it is easier to take a photo by a photographer than in photo booth. If necessary, ask for additional information or assistance from customer service official.
Document annexed to an application that is issued in a foreign country has to be translated into Estonian, English or Russian and notarised certification of the translation is required.
The document needs to be certified with an apostille certificate (marginal note) or legalised, excl. in cases, if it has been issued by a country:
- with which Estonia has signed a contract of legal assistance: Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Ukraine, Russia.
- who are subjects to the Convention on the issue of multilingual extracts from civil status records, signed at Vienna in 1976: Austria, Belgium, Bosnia, Spain, the Netherlands, Croatia, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Moldavia, Montenegro, Poland, Portugal, France, Germany, Serbia, Slovenia, Switzerland and Turkey.
Additional information can be found at home page of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
On 1st of July 2012 entered into force an agreement on cancellation of the legalization requirement of population register documents of Estonia and Finland, which significantly simplifies for people to manage their public businesses in both countries. Pursuant to the agreement the statements of population register, which are made in English language, shall be mutually recognized without any additional certificate (apostille) or translation.
The agreement specifies the list of documents which will be mutually released from apostille. On the part of Estonia such documents are statements of the population register in English language (certificates for birth, death, marriage, change of name, divorce, certificate on ability to get married and statement with selective data). On the part of Finland such documents are the statement of the population register (with selective data), certificate by church and certificate on ability to get married.
From now on, for a citizen of Estonia and for a citizen of Finland who is residing in Estonia the best way is to apply in a local municipality for an English language statement of Estonian population register with all the requested data. The statement of the population register is free of charge. For evidencing a certain event, it is possible, when required, to ask from a county government the English language certificate of such event, which shall be issued against state fee payment pursuant to the State Fees Act (for certificate of birth, death, marriage and divorce the state fee is 3,19 Euros, for certificate on ability to get married 1,59 Euros and for a statement of decision on change of name 3,19 Euros).
This named agreement is not applicable to vital statistics documents which have been issued before 1.07.2010 and to the statements issued in Estonian and Finnish languages.
The full text of the agreement is provided in the State Gazette „Riigi Teataja“.