US Apostille | International Apostille

Get your US document certified for use abroad.

If you are traveling, trading, or studying outside the United States, you properly will need to certify your documents to be valid for use overseas.

Apostille convention - The Hague 1961

Apostille stamp or “ Apostille Certificate” is required to be attached on any legal or personal document destined for use outside the United States. The word Apostille was first introduced in the Hague Convention, which was held in the Hague 1961. The Convention abolished foreign document legalization requirements and introduced the “Apostille certification ” to replace the  long bureaucratic procedures of embassy legalization with just a single certification.
See complete list of all Apostille Convention participating countries

Apostille US documents for use outside the United States

The United States of America has signed the Apostille treaty on 1980, to abolish foreign document legalization requirements and to replace it with the Apostille Stamp
The United State has two designated authorities, which are responsible for the issuance of the Apostille Certificate. Which designated authority you need depends on the type of your document as follow:

  1. The Secretary of State  in 50 states for public state documents and personal documents
  2. The US Department of State for all types of federally issued documents.

The Secretary of State Apostille Certification

All offices of the Secretaries of State all over the United State are responsible for attaching the Apostille Attestation on public State document and personal documents to be recognized for use outside the United States. Each type of document has a different legal procedure to be accepted for authentication from the office of the Secretary of State. There are a Secretary of State Office in each State in the United States:

Please Note that you must Apostille your document from the Office of the Secretary of State in the same State that issued the document. For example,  you cannot Apostille a document issued in the State of Oregon in any other State, Only the Oregon Secretary of State Office can attach the Apostille Stamp on your document.

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • idaho
  • Illinois
  • indiana
  • iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • tennessee
  • texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Documents eligible for apostille from the Secretary of State

1) Company Issued Documents

Any corporate document issued by a US corporation and located in the same State. Company issued documents require prior notarization before a licensed notary public in the same State that issued the document.
Examples of Corporate documents including, but not limited to:-

  • Minutes of Organizational Meeting of directors
  • Certificate of Incumbency
  • Power of Attorney.
  • Shareholder List
  • Restated Certificate of Incorporation
  • Certificate of existence
  • Certificate of Analysis
  • letter of Intent
  • Foreign Certificate of Registration
  • Agency Agreement
  • Letter of Resignation
  • Operating Agreement
  • Shareholder certificate of Interest
  • Business Letter
  • Distributor Agreement
  • Asset purchase Agreement
  • Foreign Certificate of Registration
  • Letter of Authorization
  • Amendment
  • Bill of Sale
  • Termination of foreign Corporation
  • Articles of Incorporation
  • ISO Certificate
  • Certificate of Formation
  • Shareholder Contribution Schedule
  • Certificate of Merger
  • Technical Data Sheet
  • Corporate Consolidation
  • Agreement to Form a Corporation
  • Corporate Resolution
  • Affidavit
  • Change of Agent
  • Statement of Dissolution
  • Company Bylaws
  • Free sale Certificate
  • Consolidation Certificate
  • Stock Purchase Agreement
  • Business License
  • Stock Certificate
  • Certificate of Good Standing
  • Assignment

2) Commercial Export Document

It is a document used for the exportation of goods and products outside the United States. An export document must be signed by a corporate agent and notarized by a notary public before it can be eligible for the Secretary of State Apostille.
Examples of Export documents including, but not limited to:-

  • Commercial Invoice
  • Dangerous Goods Certificate
  • Shipper Letter of Instruction
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Consular Invoice
  • Certificate of Analysis
  • Packing List
  • Pro Forma Invoice
  • Pre-Shipment Inspection
  • Bill of Lading (Air, Ocean, Truck, Rail)
  • Letter of Credit
  • Veterinary certificate
  • Insurance Certificate
  • Export License
  • Sales certificate
  • Halal Certificate
  • Bank Draft
  • Weight Certificate
  • Kosher Certificate
  • Export Declaration
  • Fumigation Certificate
  • Health Certificate
  • Phytosanitary Certificate

3) Educational Documents

Educational documents or academic credentials must be issued by the public/ private schools/ universities in the same State, where you are going to get your Apostille. Educational documents must be signed by the school/ university registrar and notarized by a commissioned notary public before it can be apostilled from the Secretary of State.
Examples of Educational Documents including, but not limited to:-

  • School/ College Transcript
  • School/ College Diploma
  • Teaching Credentials
  • TESOL Certificate
  • Bachelor Degree/ Certificate
  • Graduate Record Examination GRE
  • Doctorate Certificate
  • Master Degree
  • Associate Degree
  • Doctorate Degree

4) Vital Records

Vital records are documents issued by the state agencies such as the local health departments and doesn’t require a prior notarization.
Examples of Educational Documents including, but not limited to:-

  • Birth Certificate
  • Death Certificate
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Divorce Certificate
  • Divorce decree
  • Driver License
  • US Passport

5) The US Department of State Apostille Certification

The US State Department in Washington Dc is responsible for the issuance of Apostille Certificate on documents issued by federal entities or agencies such as the FDA, the FBI, the USPTO, the EPA, the USDA, the SSA, the IRS, and department of Homeland Security.
Examples of Federal Documents including, but not limited to:-

  • FDA Documents
  • FBI Document
  • Homeland Security Documents
  • Sanitation Certificate
  • Criminal Background Check
  • Naturalization Certificate
  • BSE- Free Certificate.
  • USPTO Documents
  • Social Security Documents
  • Certificate of Free Sale (CFS).
  • Patent
  • Social Security Benefit Letter
  • Certificate of Exportability.
  • Trademark
  • Certificate to Foreign Government (CFG).
  • USDA Documents
  • Certificate of Non-Clinical Research Use Only Materials Certificate.
  • Plant certificate
  • Good Manufacture Practice Certificate (GMP).
  • Animal Health Certificate
  • Certificate of Pharmaceutical products (COPP).
  • Phytosanitary Certificate
  • Certificate of Pharmaceutical product- Foreign Manufacturer
  • IRS Documents
  • Specified Risk Material of Bovine, Ovine, and Caprine Origin Materials.
  • Form 6166‐ US Tax Residency

If you have any problem certifying your document, or you are in a time pressed situation, you can use our expedited Apostille service. Please visit to choose your country and compare our prices.

In our next article we will be talking about document legalization for non signatory countries to the Hague Apostille convention.