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
Indianapolis, IN 46204
Fee: no charge
Designated Authority: Secretary of State; Deputy Secretary of State
n apostille is a form of authentication issued for documents used in countries participating in the Hague Convention of 1961. A list of countries that accept apostilles is provided by the U.S. State Department -
The Office of the Indiana Secretary of State provides apostille and authentication services to U.S. citizens and foreign nationals for documents used overseas. The types of documents which can be authenticated include:
Corporate documents such as company bylaws and articles of incorporation;
Power of attorney;
Letters relating to degrees;
References and job certifications;
Deeds of assignments;
Distributorship agreements; and
Papers for adoption purposes.
The U.S. State Department provides general information about document authentications and apostilles under the Hague Convention of 1961.
Indiana does not charge a fee for the apostille/authentication service, unlike most other states.
Obtaining an Apostille or Authentication/Certification
Apostille certificates are issued by a state government for documents which have been signed by a government official -
You must send the following information along with the document(s) to be authenticated to obtain an apostille.
Step 1 -
All documents must be notarized by a notary public. The notary must:
Witness the signing of the original signature;
Print their name exactly as listed on his/her notary commission paper;
Place their original signature below the printed name on the documents;
Expiration date of their notary commission;
County of residence;
Place the date he or she is signing the document to prove their notary commission is active on date signed; and
Place a notary public seal.
Looking to verify your notary public is active? Click here to double check to make sure the notary is in good standing.
Step 2 -
Collect and notarize all documents as outlined in Step 1.
Write a cover letter, which must include the following:
The name of the country where the documents will be sent -
A daytime phone number where the customer can be reached for questions; and
Information as to where the documents should be mailed after processing.
Postage paid envelope for document return.
Step 3 -
Mail all required documents outlined in Step 1 and 2 to the Authentication Department of the Indiana Secretary of State's office. Indiana, unlike many other states, does not charge for the apostille/authentication service.
Indiana Secretary of State
302 W. Washington Street, Room E-
Indianapolis, IN 46204
Requests received by noon will be completed by noon the following business day.
Filings received after noon will be completed by noon in two business days.
Vital Records Document
If the document is a vital records document -
If the document is a court issued document -
However, our office is unable to verify federal documents. Individuals looking to authenticate a federal document must contact the U.S. Department of State Authentication Department.