About Document Legalization

For document(s) from the United States to be used in another country, the document must be authenticated and legalized, or must receive apostille. (Note: the apostille is only for countries that are members of the Hague Legalization Convention).

Legalization of documents requires the notarization and authentication of each document, including having official seals from the U.S. Department of State and the Consulate or Embassy of the destination country placed on the document. Procedures for legalization can vary depending on the country where the document will be used.

Some countries are members of the Hague Convention (Hague Legalization Convention). US Documents are considered legal for use in member countries by getting an “Apostille”, which is a type of seal from the Secretary of State in the US State where the document originates.

Legalization of documents for use in a country that is not part of the Hague Legalization Convention requires a different procedure. The document, (unless it is a government issued document), must first be notarized by a local notary public.

Then the notarized document must be taken to the local courthouse for notary certification.

Documents then go to the Secretary of State for the US State where the document is from to obtain a seal. All of this is done in the local State where the document originates.

After this, the documents can be sent to Travisa to complete the legalization process.

The notarized document with a seal from the local State Secretary of State should be sent to Travisa along with our order packet. Travisa will then submit the document to the U.S. Department of State for an official State Department seal, if required. Finally, the document can be processed by Travisa through the Embassy or Consulate of the destination country for authentication. Once this process is complete, Travisa will return the legalized document with all of the required seals.