What is a California Apostille

Bookmark and Share

What is a California Apostille?

Let’s first define what an apostille is.  An Apostille is simply the name for a specialized certificate, issued by the California Secretary of State. The Apostille, which contains a red seal, is attached to your original document.  Not every country is a member of the Apostille convention.  If the country you plan to send your documents too is not a member of the Apostille convention, then the California Secretary of State will attach a Certification.

The most common types of documents include (Note: Some documents require a certified copy):

  • Marriage Licenses, Divorce agreements, Divorce Decree
  • Birth Certificates, Marriage Certificates, Death Certificates
  • Single Status to Marry, No record of a Marriage
  • Criminal Record – Criminal Background Check
  • Local Police, Sherriff’s Department, etc…
  • Power of Attorney – General, Special, Finance, Real Estate etc.
  • Notarized copies of Passport, Affidavits, and other documents
  • Papers for Adoption purposes
  • Transcripts (High School, College, University, or any other issuing agency)
  • Diploma, Degree Certificates, Graduation Records
  • Permission to Travel, Consent by Parent(s) to travel with Minor Children

A document which bears the notaries seal and stamp will also qualify for a California Apostille.  In fact, any document which is notarized correctly can receive an Apostille.  Because we are based out of Los Angeles, we provide professional mobile notary service in addition to Apostille service.  We’ll come by to pick-up, notarize or authenticate your documents, then schedule to meet with the Secretary of State either that same day or the next business day.  Completed documents are sent by FedEx overnight and generally arrives by 10:30am to following business morning..

Obtaining an Apostille is simple if you work with a professional.  Unfortunately, some people think that it’s easy to obtain an Apostille.

Obtaining a California Apostille is time consuming, requires traveling to the California Secretary of State office, standing in line for several hours, paying parking fees, apostille fees, notary fees, and return shipping fees. Different countries have different requirements.  Some countries may reject your document if they have not been translated correctly or if the California Apostille is placed on the wrong page.  Also, not every document qualifies for a California Apostille.

California Apostilles are issued by the California Secretary of State only.  Here is an example of a California Apostille. California Apostilles are randomly numbered, attached to the original, and stamped by a California Apostille red seal.  The date and apostille number can be checked by visiting this link: http://www.sos.ca.gov/business/notary/apostille-search/

Work with a professional California Apostille service!  Death, Birth, Marriage, Divorce, Affidavits, Diploma, School Transcripts, and Power of Attorney documents are extremely important and highly sensitive information.  They should be handled by professionals only.