An apostille is a government seal that makes it legal to use certain documents outside of the United States. These documents include public documents like marriage, birth, and death certificates, as well as all types of court documents, diplomas, school records, and official certificates.
How do I get a document apostilled?
You’ll need to have all of your documents in order. This means you’ll need original copies of your state-issued documents, notarized within that state and made official. You’ll also need the name of the country requesting that document, so your notary can double check the document requirements due to the fact that each country has their own set of specific guidelines regarding document apostilles.
Any vital records (birth, death, or marriage documents) must come from their country of origin. You can request an apostille online or in person, and you’ll need to go through the appropriate channels, per your state guidelines, in order to get to the right department and request your apostille. Most requests should be directed through the Secretary of State. The time frame could be up to seven days, so give yourself some flexibility if you need an apostille; you may not be able to get it immediately.
How much does an apostille cost?
The total cost of getting an apostille may include getting copies of all necessary documents. Depending on the county, some vital records offices may charge $10 and up per copy, for documents like birth or marriage certificates. Factor in the cost of a signing service, as well as the apostille itself, and you’ll have the total amount. To request an apostille from the Secretary of State, it’s generally $15 per copy, unless the apostille is for adoption proceedings, in which case the cost drops down to $10 per apostille.
What about documents written in a foreign language?
If you need documents apostilled that are not written in English, you’ll need to have the papers translated by a translator, then the notary signs on the translated documents. The notary would need to witness the translation as well as the translator signing the papers, then both the untranslated and translated copies would be turned in to receive the apostille.
All apostilles require a legal signature and official seal of the participating agency. Documents that are apostilled require no further certification upon entering another country, including Embassy or customs certification. Check with state guidelines to ensure you have everything you need to request an apostille as well as the appropriate forms and notarized documents to expedite the process.
For more information
Looking for a convenient notary to help you get your apostille process moving? Contact Superior Notary Services at 877-507-4600 for quick and easy document notarization. Our other services include real estate, auto loan, mortgage, and general notarizations at a convenient time and place for a reasonable fee. Browse our website to find out more about what we offer, or stop by our office, located at 3990 Lakeway Drive, Suite 109 in St. Paul, Texas.