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Legal Resources

Apostille Requirements

U.S. Department of State Issued Apostille Requirements

Federally issued documents destined for use in participating Hague Apostille countries may need to be authenticated with an Apostille issued by the U.S. Department of State. Documents requiring an Apostille issued by the U.S. Department of State are those which have been signed by one of the following:

  • U.S. Federal Official 
  • an American Consular Officer 
  • a Military Notary, Judge Advocate (10 USC 1044a), or a foreign Consul diplomatic official registered with the State Department Office of Protocol  

Note:   All certifications must include a legible signature of the official's name, title and seal of the agency.

  • Please submit a completed Request of Authentications Service DS-4194 form with all of your requests. In Section 4 of the DS-4194, the "Country of Use" please put the actual name of the country the document will be used in. This information for each document must be specified before the document(s) can be processed. The "Country of Use" is the actual country the document will be used in. 

 

State-Issued Apostille Requirements

State issued documents destined for use in Hague Apostille countries may be authenticated by the Competent Authority in the state where the document was executed. A list of these authorities can be found on the Hague website.  The local state requirements are as follows:

  • Officials (usually in the office of the state’s Secretary of State) must have been designated as a competent authority to issue Apostilles under the Convention. 
  • A document with an Apostille does not require additional certification by the U.S. Department of State or legalization by a U.S. embassy or consulate overseas to be recognized in a participating country. 

Note:  The U.S. Department of State will not issue an Apostille for state-issued documents. 

  • If your documents are intended for use in a country that does not participate in the Hague Apostille Convention, you may request an authentication certificate from the Department of State based on the authentication requirements.