Getting Chinese Work Visa Through Korean Ministry

Complicated question here. 

I'm an expat in South Korea, hoping to move to China for a job.  I came here intending to stay only for a few months.  Due to COVID-19, that time has been stretched out.  Since I've been in this country for over  a year, my (hopefully) future employers have asked for a criminal background from Korea as well as from Canada. 

The Canadian one is being taken care of, but the Korean one has run into a problem.  I received the background check earlier this week and it was in order.  However, I've been told that in order to get validated by the Chinese Embassy here it has to be notarized by a notary public (which I did on Tuesday) and also validated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

I am at a loss as to how to do the latter.  For one thing, I have never had any contact with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.  I've always been here under the umbrella of Korean Immigration, which is a part of the Ministry of Justice or so I'm told.  Therefore, I'm not sure if this rule was meant for Korean citizens or not. 

Second, if I did need to go to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who would I go to, what section, and how would I go about it?  I realize this question is extremely complicated.  Believe me, I would rather not be dealing with any of this at all.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.


The apostille is the certificate which they stick to the document to verify its authenticity or the notary public's signature. A simple online search will give plenty of results for online apostille issuance in Korea from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Even on government sites though, some information is conflicting, ie it states that after signing up to the site you can simply apply online with your document details and print off an immediate apostille for free, while at the same time, it seems to state that you apply on the site but pick it up by person for 1000 won. Try the first and see what happens, the site is in English.

If you are in Seoul and prefer to go in person, there is this statement on the same website, "The Consular Service located on the 6th Floor, Diplomatic Center, Nambusunhwan-ro 2558, Seocho-gu, Korea, also handles paperwork related Apostille."

It looks like on the application website where the form is, ( ) you should choose the blue side: certificate issuance.
In the blue-side form, you fill in the document name and issuing agency (National Police Agency), the document issuance number etc. (presumably on your document).

Try and see, I think to log in to the site, you may need your ID details. OK, good luck.
You can use an agency (e.g. … -in-korea/ ) but I would get used to doing things in person: (in my experience) in China you may need to, and sometimes better not to rely on an agent.

By the way, notarization followed by two apostilles is common. Usually,  government-issued documents don't require notarization (unlike degree certificates etc.) as they are already issued by the government, so the first and second apostilles should be sufficient. The first shows another country that a country guarantees its document is real, the second shows that the second country accepts the first country's assurance that it's real (for the sake of use of the document by government departments of the second country). It's always best to follow the instructions for documents completely and absolutely when dealing with officials (ie in your case, they asked for notarization as well and you got it; they needed only apostilles on my UK criminal record check) as they may have their own (hidden) reason for looking for anomalies in the documentation in order to reject applications etc., sometimes related to diplomatic relations with your country, sometimes to do with quotas for numbers of accepted applications (and nothing to do with you, your circumstances, or your documents). Just something to bear in mind.

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