Getting an Apostille in the USA
United States Authentication Authorities
Q. Who are the U.S. "Competent Authorities" to issue the Apostille certificate?
A. There are three levels of U.S. competent authorities, one for Federal agencies, one for U.S. (federal) courts, and one for state documents, including documents executed before notaries.
1. Federal Executive and Administrative Agencies: Authentications Office, Department of State, 518 23rd St., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20520, (202) 647-
2. U.S. Courts: Clerks and Deputy Clerks of the Federal Court System. Fee: $5.00.
For the purposes of the Convention, clerks and deputy clerks of the U.S. Courts shall include the clerks and deputy clerks of the following: The Supreme Court of the United States, the Courts of Appeals for the First through the Eleventh Circuits and the District of Columbia Circuit, the United States District Courts, the United States Court of Claims, the United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals, the United States Court of International Trade, the United States District Court for the District of the Canal Zone, the District Court of Guam, the District Court of the Virgin Islands, and the District Court for the Northern Mariana Islands.
Office of Secretary of State
1560 Broadway, Suite 200
Denver, CO 80202
Fee: By Mail: $2.00 While You Wait: $17.00
Designated Authority: Secretary of State; Deputy Secretary of State.
Why do I need to get a document authenticated?
An authentication or legalization, sometimes called an apostille, is needed for documents that you plan to use in a foreign country.
powers of attorney
I need to have a document authenticated. What do I need to send to you?
The original document.
The document must be notarized by a Colorado Notary Public or certified by Vital Records or the County Clerk's office.
A completed authentication request form (PDF).
A check or money order, payable to "Colorado Secretary of State".
The appropriate amount can be found in our fee schedule.
Mail all documents to:
Colorado Secretary of State
1700 Broadway, Suite 200
Denver, CO 80290
How long does it take to get an authentication?
Documents are mailed back to you the next business day. For example, if we receive your documents during regular business hours on a Tuesday, they will be mailed out on Wednesday. Note that documents are not processed on weekends or holidays.
If you want to pick up your documents, they will be ready for you after 10:30 AM the next business day. For example, if we receive your documents during regular business hours on a Tuesday, they will be ready for pickup after 10:30 AM on Wednesday. Note that documents are not processed on weekends or holidays.
Can I get my document(s) authenticated faster?
We offer expedited service for documents that are hand delivered to our office before 4:30 PM. Your documents will be processed while you wait.
There is an additional fee for expedited service. See the form (PDF) for more information.
What should be included in a notarized document?
For faster service, please make sure that the document includes:
Original signature(s) (not stamped or photocopied).
A completed document (all blanks must be filled in or crossed out).
A complete notary statement, including the state and county where the notarization took place and the date of the notarization.
Although the document may be in another language, the notary’s statement must be in English.
Can your office notarize my documents?
No. Documents must be notarized by a Colorado notary public or certified by Vital Records or the county.
Where can I find official copies of important documents?
Certified copies of birth or death certificates can be ordered from:
Vital Records Office of Colorado
4300 Cherry Creek Drive South
Denver, CO 80222-
Copies of marriage licenses, divorce decrees, or other court documents can be ordered from the County Clerk and Recorder (PDF) where they were issued.
Should I have the delivery confirmed when I mail my documents to you?
We recommend using an express or overnight delivery service that can be tracked, such as FedEx or UPS. A prepaid waybill or label must be included if you would like us to send back your document(s) using one of these shipping methods.
Can I verify the authenticity of an apostille or authentication issued by your office?
Yes, you can electronically verify an apostille or authentication.