Japanese Translation Service

Our focus allows us to provide you with incredibly low prices!

At the Shomeisho Honyaku Center, we provide accurate certificate translations
with lower prices, faster delivery, and more accurate translation than anyone else!

Your translated document will include an official certificate of professional translation!

Certificates of Translation Issued by Our Company

The certificates of translation issued by translation companies serve to testify that the contents of translations are true to the original documents.
These certificates of translation feature the company’s official stamp, as well as the signature of the company’s representative. The certificate of translation is not, itself, an official document. However, there have been many cases where the recipient of documents considers a certificate of translation from the translation company to be part of the minimum requirements.
Most of the time, when submitting documents to institutions overseas, it is necessary to include a certificate of translation, indicating that the translation was done not by yourself, but by a translation company. Much of the time, the certificates of translation issued by our company are sufficient, but when submitting documents to overseas public institutions, financial institutions, or other similar institutions, it may also be necessary to acquire public certification. We can include a certificate of translation at no extra charge, for use when submitting documents to institutions either overseas or within Japan. Please let us know ahead of time if you will need a certificate of translation.
For foreign countries that use a registered translator system (such as Germany), attaching a certificate of translation from one of these registered translators is considered equivalent to notarization. However, Japan has no registered translator system; in some cases the certificate of translation provided by our company has been enough to meet submission criteria on its own, but in other cases it has not. Make sure to find out ahead of time what type(s) of certification will be needed for submission.

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Just send a photo of your certificate, shot with your smartphone or camera, via email below.

biz@shomei-honyaku.com

Contact: Takahiro Hoshima


Shomeisho Honyaku Center

(operated by Expressions, Inc.)
3F Nakamura Bldg., 2-54, Irie, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 921-8011, Japan

Tel. 076-220-6444   FAX. 076-220-6445

Notarization and Authentication from the Legal Affairs Bureau

When working or doing business overseas, there are many certificates that you will need to submit, and you can’t simply submit certificates issued in Japan as-is overseas. You must provide an official document that shows the details of the certificate, in either the language of the target country or in English (which serves as a generally accepted lingua franca). Certificates issued in Japan can be either official documents, or private documents issued by voluntary organizations. In either case, translations are considered private documents, so public certification of a translation is always necessary, regardless of the original type of certificate.
Private documents can receive public certification through notarization at a notary public’s office. However, when submitting a document to a public institution overseas, you usually must also receive authentication from the Legal Affairs Bureau and receive an apostille from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs after notarization at the notary public’s office.
If you are submitting a document to a Hague Convention signatory country, after you finish official stamp procedures, you must then receive consular authentication from that country’s embassy or consulate in Japan. Note that there have been cases where having just an apostille was deemed insufficient by a recipient in a Hague Convention signatory country, so be sure to check beforehand what type of authentication is necessary for your document(s).

Apostilles
Apostilles are internationally accepted certifications used when submitting documents to overseas institutions; in Japan, they are issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
When submitting documents issued by Japanese public institutions, banks, etc. to overseas institutions, these overseas institutions will often request a form of internationally accepted certification.
If the Recipient of the Document(s) to Be Submitted is in a Hague Convention Signatory Country:
Before submitting, you must acquire a certification known as an “apostille,” from Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Apostille certification can be acquired for Japanese-language documents issued by Japanese public institutions, but for documents requested by public institutions in other countries, apostille authentication for the translations of the original documents will almost always be requested.
For example, when submitting documents to an overseas court of law, there have been cases where an English translation has been requested of the original Japanese family registry extract copy, and for that English translation to then, in turn, be certified.
If the destination country is one that uses a registered translator system, then if a registered translator performs the translation, it is considered equivalent to an official document. In this case, you may proceed directly to apostille acquisition through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or equivalent government body.
However, because Japan does not use a registered translator system, it is necessary to first receive authentication at a notary public’s office before acquiring an apostille through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, because translated documents are all considered private documents. Following authentication, it is necessary to perform the procedures for certification of the notary public’s stamp at the District Legal Affairs Bureau, after which it is finally possible to perform apostille procedures through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Note: “Certification of the notary public’s stamp” refers to certification issued by the head of the District Legal Affairs Bureau under whose jurisdiction the notary public’s office falls, stating that the private document(s) were in fact stamped at that notary public’s office as claimed.
Apostilles are a form of certification valid within countries that have signed the Hague Convention. Roughly half of all countries and territories worldwide are Hague Convention signatories.
However, even in signatory countries, forms of certification other than apostilles may be requested. Please check beforehand with the institution to which you plan to submit documents.
→ List of Hague Convention Signatory Countries (Ministry of Foreign Affairs website)
If the Recipient of the Document(s) to Be Submitted is in a Hague Convention Non-Signatory Country:
When submitting documents to countries that have not signed the Hague Convention, such as China, Canada, Malaysia, Vietnam, the Philippines, or Indonesia, it is necessary to use forms of authentication other than apostilles: official stamp confirmation and consular authentication.
After the original document is translated, it must undergo authentication at a notary public’s office, and the process is the same up through certification of the notary public’s stamp at the District Legal Affairs Bureau.
Following that, when going through authentication procedures with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, request an official stamp confirmation instead of an apostille.
After official stamp confirmation through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the document must be taken to the embassy or consulate in Japan of the country to which the document will be submitted, in order to acquire consular authentication.
This is a certificate confirming that the official stamp, used by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the original certification document issued by the Japanese government (an official document), was in fact stamped.
When undergoing non-apostille certification authentication, it is necessary to go through official stamp confirmation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and consular authentication with the destination country’s embassy or consulate in Japan.
Documents that have received official stamp confirmation must then receive consular authentication from the embassy or consulate in Japan of the country to which the document will be submitted.
If you receive an apostille, which is a type of certification issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, then there is no need to receive consular authentication from the embassy or consulate; the document can simply be submitted overseas as-is with the apostille enclosed.

Notarization Services
“Notarization” refers to the process by which a private document — rather than an official document issued by a public institution — receives certification from a notary at notary public’s office (a public institution), stating that the document was signed and/or stamped by the person whose name is signed and/or stamped on the document.
“Authentication” refers to third-party certification stating that, when the head of a municipal government or a register of deeds has officially stamped an official document or a document notarized as above, a third party outside of the public institution certified that the official stamp was authentic.
There have been cases where, for document applications to overseas institutions, the institution in question requested that a private document, such as a contract, be submitted (translations of official documents are considered private documents).
As an initial procedure, the signatures and/or stamps on private documents (such as translations) are notarized at a notary public’s office. Having a private document notarized at a notary public’s office makes it equivalent to an official document. Note: When submitting translated documents domestically, notarization from a notary public’s office may be sufficient in some cases.
When submitting a document to a public institution or financial institution overseas, it is necessary to receive authentication from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, or authentication from that country’s embassy in Japan.
For public institution authentication, you must first receive certification of the notary public’s stamp at your District Legal Affairs Bureau, then…
→ If the recipient of the document to be submitted is in a Hague Convention signatory country, you can acquire an apostille from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
→ If the recipient of the document to be submitted is in a Hague Convention non-signatory country, you must receive official stamp confirmation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, then also receive consular authentication from that country’s embassy or consulate in Japan.
The Notarization Service Process
We Translate the Document
• A certificate of translation can be included at no extra charge.

We Handle Notarization Procedures for Private Document Authentication at a Notary Public’s Office
• The notarization processing fees paid to the notary public’s office generally cost ¥11,000–17,000.

We Handle Procedures for Certification of the Notary Public’s Stamp at the District Legal Affairs Bureau

We Handle Procedures to Acquire an Apostille through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
• If you are submitting a document to a Hague Convention non-signatory country, then after receiving official stamp confirmation, it is also necessary to receive consular authentication from that country’s embassy in Japan.

We Send the Document to You

 

 

 

(Case 1)
Translations of Certified Copies of Registers and Company Statutes
When conducting business with, or establishing collaborations with, companies overseas, it’s not uncommon for them to request that your company provide a certified copy of your register.
The certified copies of registers issued by the Japanese government are official documents, so you may acquire apostilles from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for them, or have them officially notarized through a process known as “official stamp confirmation.”
However, because the translation of your certified copy of your register is considered a private document, it is much less straightforward to have that notarized.
(Note that company statutes, letters of attorney, etc. are all considered private documents, whether in the original Japanese or translated to another language.)
In order for a private document to be regarded as being equivalent to official documents, it is necessary to go through a process known as “authentication of a private document” at a notary public’s office.
“Authentication of a private document” refers to when a notary certifies that the signature and stamp (or written name and stamp) in a document are authentic, and were applied by the person in question.
A notary public’s authentication certifies this signing process. On the other hand, in no way does a notary public’s authentication prove that the contents of a document are true or accurate — at most, it indicates only that the document is not inherently unlawful or legally invalid.
After having a private document authenticated at a notary public’s office, it is necessary to then receive certification of the notary public’s stamp from the Legal Affairs Bureau under whose jurisdiction that notary public’s office falls.
“Certification of the notary public’s stamp” refers to official certification stating that the private document authenticated at the notary public’s office was authenticated under the authority of the head of the Legal Affairs Bureau under whose jurisdiction that notary public’s office falls, and stating that the stamping was in fact performed.
After receiving certification of the notary public’s stamp from the Legal Affairs Bureau, the document can finally go through the procedures to receive an apostille from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, at which point it is finally considered an official document.
Note: Signatory countries to the Hague Convention consider a document notarized through just application for an apostille. However, when submitting documents to non-signatory countries, it is necessary to first go through official stamp confirmation procedures, then to go through a procedure known as consular authentication at that country’s embassy (or consulate) in Japan. Even in signatory countries, consular authentication may be necessary, depending on the type or contents of the document(s) in question, so be sure to check beforehand.