Apostilles are authentications of public documents to be transferred between countries. One provision of the use of apostilles is that countries sending and receiving the documents must be compliant with the Hague Apostille Convention of 1961, which is an international treaty intended to streamline the complex, traditional procedures for authenticating public documents.
Where Does One Apply for an Apostille?
An Apostille from the Secretary of State is issued upon formal request. In most states, the “Apostille/Certificate of Authentification Request Form” is the official form used. Note that professionals working for an authentication service can assist you in selecting the specific type of form that you will need.
The difference between document authentication lies with the type of document. For example, personal documents include power of attorney, birth, marriage, criminal background checks, transcripts and diplomas. Commercial documents include certificates of good standing, commercial agreements and contracts, articles of incorporation and board resolutions as well as powers of attorney.
The Basic Information on an Apostille
An apostille from a Secretary of State official will contain basic information that includes:
Country of origin.
Notice of public document.
Signer of the apostille document.
Stamp or seal from the county of Secretary of State.
Specific location, date and time of issuance.
Name of the deputy assigned.
Actual stamp or seal.
Most individuals who have never requested an apostille from a Secretary of State office may not know the differences between an apostille, an authenticated document and a notarized document. You need to hire an authentication professional to receive an apostille because notaries cannot issue apostilles themselves, although they can notarize the documents once they are issued.
How to Choose an Authentication Professional
Authentication professionals specialize in a variety of services related to the authentication of documents for their customers. Our expert staff at U.S. Authentication Services in Springfield offer fast, secure and reliable document authentication.
For more information on getting an Apostille from the Secretary of State, visit US Authentication Services on their website or call 703-971-7226.