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An Apostille is an internationally recognized form of authentication for public documents. Established by the Hague Convention of 1961, an Apostille certificate authenticates the origin of a document, providing a simplified global standard for document verification.

The Mechanics of Apostille

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When a document receives Apostille certification, it undergoes a rigorous verification process, which includes confirming the legitimacy of the issuing authority and the signature on the document. This simplifies the document's acceptance in other Hague Convention member countries.

Types of Documents Requiring an Apostille

  • Birth Certificates

  • Marriage Certificates

  • Academic Degrees

  • Legal Contracts

  • Medical Records

  • Business Agreements

Apostille Vs. Legalization

While Apostilles serve Hague Convention countries, non-member countries typically require a longer process known as Legalization.

Obtaining an Apostille: A Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Confirm the destination country is a Hague Convention member.

  2. Ensure your document is original and complete.

  3. Submit your document to the designated state or federal authority for apostillization.

  4. Pay the applicable fee, which can vary by jurisdiction and document type.


What is the Hague Convention?

The Hague Convention is an international treaty designed to simplify the process of document authentication across its member countries.

Can Apostilles expire?

Apostilles themselves do not expire, although the document they authenticate might have an expiration date.

How much does it cost to get an Apostille?

The cost can vary depending on the jurisdiction and the type of document.

Is electronic Apostille acceptable?

Yes, some countries accept electronic Apostilles, often referred to as e-Apostilles.

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