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Business Document Authentication
 

Keywords: authentication, legal document, foreign consulate, certification, verify, certificate, license, notary

 

Legal documents executed in US must be authenticated by the foreign consulate in order to be used in a foreign country (document authentication). What the consulate does is to verify that the last signature (usually from the Secretary of State Office) is true and valid. 

Type of documents can be authenticated include but not limited to: 
1. birth/death certificates, marriage certificates, diplomas 

2. power of attorney 

3. adoption application papers 

4. business license, financial statements, etc 

Authentication is sometimes also called certification or legalization. 

General Procedures 
1. Sign before a notary public. 

2. Certified by the Secretary of State Office (or Department of State) of the state where the document is executed. 

Some states require the notarized document to be sent to the notary public's county clerk for verification before presenting to the Office of Secretary of State. Please contact Secretary of State Office of the state where your document is executed for details. 

Certain government or court document can be certified directly by the Office of Secretary of State, like Court Decree, Marriage License, Birth Certificate, etc. Please contact Secretary of State Office of your state for details. 

Some states only certify government or court documents issued within last 1-2 years (e.g. Oklahoma). 

3. Certified by the relevant Consulate General. You must apply to the correct Consulate General which holds consular jurisdiction over your area of residence. 

The Consular District of the Chinese Consulate General in Houston covers: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Texas. We only accept authentication applications for documents certified by the Secretaries of State Office of the above 8 states plus Puerto Rico. 

Documents to be included 
1. One Authentication Application Form. The form must be completed and signed by the applicant. 

The applicant is the person who submits the application -- he/she may or may not be person who owns/signs the original document to be authenticated, but must be the person who signs on the Authentication Application Form (G1). 

2. Photocopy of the applicant's passport and/or other form(s) of identification (e.g. green card). 

3. The "original" (see note) and photocopy of the document to be authenticated. For documents related to property, business or commercial use, a complete photocopy of all pages of the original documents must be enclosed. For all other documents, please enclose the photocopy of the pages with seal and signature of notary public and all other certification agencies/officers. 

4. Photocopy of Articles of Incorporation, if the document to be authenticated is a corporate or company document (please provide one copy per document to be authenticated). 

Note: 
1. The "original document" means the document coming from the Secretary of State Office and with the signature of the Secretary of State on the first page. Please do NOT take them apart when making copies -- doing so will invalidate the document. 

2. The consulate "authenticates" the signature of the Secretary of State by attaching a certificate on the back of the page with the signature of the Secretary of State. 

3. If you want to authenticate multiple copies of the same document, you need to get multiple copies from your Secretary of State. 

4. For each "original" business document to authenticated, please attach a photocopy of your companies Articles of Incorporation, unless the document to be authenticated is the Articles of Incorporation.

                                                                                                                    Source: http://visa.ywpw.com/notary/authentication_en.html

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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