Obtaining an Apostille

An apostille is a form of authentication accepted in countries which have signed the 1961 Hague Convention. This Convention abolished the requirement of diplomatic and consular legalization for public documents originating in one Convention country and intended for use in another. An apostille is often needed in adoptions, extraditions, and certain business transactions. It is frequently required for birth, death and marriage records, as well as for education records.

A student or former student of Alfred University who needs to have the apostille attached to a particular education document should submit a written and signed request to the University Registrar. Because of the costs associated with the preparation and certification of these documents, the student must also include US $25 cash, traveler’s check or international money order payable to Alfred University for each document that is to receive the apostille. A personal check drawn on a U.S. bank is also acceptable. The request must indicate the name of the country in which the apostille will be used.

The apostille is usually required for an official transcript and/or a statement or certification of graduation. However, some countries require that a copy of the diploma issued at graduation have the apostille. If this is the case, the requestor must send his or her original diploma to Alfred University to be copied and certified. The original diploma is returned to the student.

We prepare the official documents including this statement: “I certify that this is a true copy of the original document” or, in the case of a letter certifying graduation, “I certify that this is an official record”. The University Registrar signs the documents and affixes the University seal in the presence of a notary public, who also signs the documents and affixes a seal. We then forward the documents to the County Clerk’s Office of the county in which the notary public is qualified to serve, along with a check for the fees. After the County Clerk has certified the qualifications of the notary public, the documents are forwarded, again with a check for the fees, to the New York State Department of State in Albany for attachment of the apostille. When we have received the documents with the apostille from Albany, we send the whole package to the person making the request.

This process can take four to six weeks. We use U.S. Priority Mail (2 to 3 days delivery) to send these documents from one party to another within the U.S. If international shipment is involved or if any other method of shipment is to be used, the person requesting the apostille must make the arrangements and pre-pay the charges. Only U.S. Priority Mail shipment is covered by the fee of US $25 paid to the University for each document to be authenticated with the apostille.

Information specific to obtaining an Apostille in the state of New York is found at NY Dept of State.