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Navigating Apostille Services in Texas: A Comprehensive Guide

We talk about the professional services available for Apostille in Texas. The blog also covers the requirements, process, and resources for obtaining Apostille documents.
Globeia

6 mins

Jan 1st, 2024

Understanding the Basics of Apostille in Texas

Managing documentation guidelines and submission requirements can be pretty time-consuming, especially when you come across terms like Apostille, Authentication, Legalization, and Notarization. Nevertheless, understanding these terms, their purposes, and how to complete their respective procedures can pay dividends when it comes to immigrating or finding a new job in another country. 

The Document Apostille team at Globeia has put this comprehensive apostille guide together for Texans dealing with document requirements of other countries. You may be planning to study abroad, do business in a foreign country, move with your family, or register your marriage there. In any of these cases, you will need to gain a basic understanding of what an Apostille is and how to get one in Texas.

What is an Apostille?

Apostille is an internationally recognized authentication process for documents that are headed for any of the countries participating in the Hague Convention of 1961. The Apostille certificate for a document validates the authenticity of the signature and seal that it carries, helping the document holder prove its legitimacy in the member countries. You can look at the apostille as an international authentication seal that is accepted by more than 100 countries. 

Texas, like other U.S. states, uses this international process to authenticate documents such as birth certificates, college diplomas, marriage licenses, court orders, or business contracts for use abroad. Similarly, foreign nationals who have spent some time in Texas may need to authenticate their Texas-issued documents for use in their home country. In all these cases, getting an Apostille is a key step.

Importance and Uses of Apostille in Texas

Apostille ensures your documents are universally accepted and that you don’t face any authentication problems when submitting them to international offices. Texas, like other U.S. states, uses this international process to authenticate documents such as birth certificates, college diplomas, marriage licenses, court orders, or business contracts for use abroad. Similarly, foreign nationals who have spent some time in Texas may need to authenticate their Texas-issued documents for use in their home country. In all these cases, getting an Apostille is a key step. 

When is Apostille Needed in Texas?

The need for an Apostille in Texas depends on your specific situation. You will likely need an apostille if you plan to use your Texas-issued document in a country that is a member of the Hague Convention. However, this process is not accepted in all countries. We recommend checking the document verification requirements of your destination country to confirm if they use apostille or another form of authentication. 

Texas Apostille Process Unveiled

How to Apostille a Birth Certificate in Texas

Getting an apostille on a birth certificate in Texas generally involves the same type of steps as in any other U.S. State. You need to submit an application to the Secretary of State’s office in Austin, along with a cover letter explaining your intent. The Secretary of State’s office is generally very quick at responding to these requests, so you can expect to hear back from them within a few weeks.   

Significance of Apostilling Birth Certificates in Texas

Birth certificates are usually required for immigration, international education, marriage, and employment. Texans need an apostille stamp on their State-issued birth certificates before submitting them to international authorities. The main reason behind this requirement is to help protect individuals against identity theft and document forgery. 

 

Apostille certificates can be tracked easily under the Hague Convention system, making it easier for authorities worldwide to verify documents. 

You will be able to easily prove your nationality and state of birth with a Texas birth certificate that has an apostille stamp attached. This way, your international job, study, or immigration application will be accepted without any further identity verification. 

Step-by-Step Guide for Birth Certificate Apostille

Birth certificates in Texas are issued by the Texas Department of Health Services. Here is a step-by-step guide for their apostille in Texas. 

  1. Check your birth certificate to make sure that it is original and not a scanned copy. Otherwise, you can contact the Texas Department of State Health Services to get another copy which can be certified for the apostille process.
  2. Write your Apostille Cover letter to be attached to your certificate prepared in Step 1. This cover letter must contain your basic details and the reason for requesting an apostille. Don’t forget to include the name of your country of destination, as it is required for apostille. 
  3. You can now submit your birth certificate to the Secretary of State's office through any of the three available options. These options are In-person submission, mail submission, and Apostille service submission.

Texas Secretary of State Apostille

Your apostille request will need to be submitted to the Texas Secretary of State’s office. The Secretary of State is the only authority that can issue an apostille in Texas, to verify your public documents. 

Role and Functions of Texas Secretary of State in Apostille

A Secretary of State apostille makes your Texas-origin documents legally acceptable in other countries, provided they are members of the Hague Apostille Convention.

You can contact the Secretary of State’s office for your questions regarding apostille requirements, document eligibility, and fees. In addition to this, you can also visit their website to get a general idea of your request’s processing times. The website has a separate section mentioning the apostille requests that they are processing at any given time.  

Obtaining Apostille Through the Texas Secretary of State

We have previously talked about the process for getting an apostille on birth certificates through the Texas Secretary of State. You need to follow similar steps for your other documents. Here is a quick recap of what you need to do.

Preparation

Preparing your documents in advance is key, as ineligible documents are rejected by the Department of State. If the document is a certified copy, it must have been issued within the last five years. We recommend you get a new copy if the five-year period has passed. 

Payment and Submission

Pay the apostille fee and submit your document to the Secretary of State's office. Don’t forget to include a completed Apostille Request Form with your request.

Exploring Texas Apostille Services

Texas Apostille Services make the process of document authentication easier and less time-consuming, by offering a one-stop solution. These services usually accept documents for apostille both online and via in-person submissions at their offices. 

Overview of Available Apostille Services in Texas

Apostille services in Texas can help streamline the Apostille process for you. These companies usually specialize in managing all of the apostille steps. This means that everything from your document’s preparation, submission, and delivery will be handled by the company that you hire. Now, let’s look at the criteria that you need to consider before choosing an apostille service that best fits your unique situation.

Criteria for Choosing the Right Apostille Service

Consider factors such as turnaround time, customer service, reputation, and pricing when choosing an Apostille service. Ensure the service is knowledgeable about the Apostille process and has a proven track record.

  1. Look for a service that understands the Hague Apostille Convention requirements and is well-prepared to help you with the process.
  2. Ask the available companies for their expected turnaround time, so that you don’t face unnecessary delays.
  3. Decide a budget and then compare the prices of the apostille companies offering their services in Texas. Some services may also provide expedited services for additional fees.
  4. Lastly, don’t forget to read customer reviews for your chosen list of companies. 

Texas Notary Public Apostilles

There are currently 484,230 notaries operating in Texas. These are Texas Secretary of State commissioned public officers who are allowed to administer oaths, take deed acknowledgements, and certify documents. Their main role in the Apostille process is to certify the signature on the documents so that the Secretary of State can then put an apostille stamp on them. 

Understanding the Role of Notary Public in Texas Apostilles

The notaries verify the identity of the people signing the document and ensure that they're signing them voluntarily. This makes the document legally acceptable, which is a chief requirement for the Apostille process.

Let’s consider a scenario where you are submitting a Power of Attorney for an Apostille. The letter must be notarized first to verify your identity. The notary will do this by first witnessing you signing the document, and then affixing their signature and seal to it. Once notarized, the document can be submitted directly to the Secretary of State’s office or through Globeia’s reliable service for the Apostille certification.

How to Obtain Notarized Apostilles in Texas

You need to follow these steps to get a notarized apostille in Texas:

  • Prepare your document by filling it out completely and ensuring that it does not have any erasures or alterations.
  • Find a Notary Public near you. They are usually available at law firms, real estate offices, and through online channels. The best option is to find one online and book an appointment through their website. 
  • Sign the document in the presence of the notary. Also, don’t forget to take a valid, government-issued ID to your appointment, to verify your identity.
  • The Notary will complete the rest of the notarization process, after which you can submit your document to the Secretary of State’s office for Apostille.

Specialized Apostille Services in Austin, Texas

The Texas Secretary of State’s office is located in Austin. This is why there is a large number of specialized apostille services in the Austin area, to cater to the high demand. Let’s take a look at their unique aspects and the benefits of choosing an apostille service for your document authentication in Austin. 

Unique Aspects of Apostille Services in Austin

Since these services are located near the Secretary of State’s office, you will get an expedited service. This means that your documents will be submitted to the Secretary’s office faster and the apostilled documents will also be delivered to your chosen address quickly. 

Apostille requirements vary according to document types. However, these services have years of experience in the industry, so they will not have any problems in handling your request.  

Benefits of Opting for Apostille in Austin

 

  • Apostille services in Texas are very current on the Secretary of State’s apostille requirements. Due to their proximity to the Department of State building, they are usually the first to know about any policy changes. This helps them process your request in line with the most recent guidelines. 
  • These apostille services provide clear communication throughout the Apostille process and you will not face any fluctuations in their quoted turnaround times.  

Texas Apostille Form: Demystifying the Documentation

The Apostille form in Texas is called the "Request for Official Certificate or Apostille Form". The official code for this form is 2102. Let's take a look at why Form #2102 is important and how to fill it out for your apostille request. 

Breakdown of the Texas Apostille Form and Its Importance

The Texas Apostille form provides important information about the document you need to authenticate. This information is required by the Department of State before they can start to verify your document.

The form includes details such as the name of the country where the document will be used, the type of your document, and your contact information. There is also a payment information section, as there is a State fee for apostille certification. Your application will be rejected if you don’t attach a completed apostille request form. 

How to Properly Fill Out the Texas Apostille Form

Here are the steps to properly fill out your apostille request form:

  1. Specify the type of your document and also the country where it will be used. 
  2. Fill in your contact information, including your name, address, phone number, and email. This information is required for identity verification and sending the Apostilled document back to you.
  3. The Apostille fee in Texas is $15 per document, which can be paid by check or money order to the Secretary of State’s office.

FAQs

How to Apostille a Document in Texas?

Where Can I Get an Apostille in Texas?

What are some of the locations and resources for obtaining apostille services?

Is Notary Public Necessary for Texas Apostille?

What is the role and requirements of notary public in apostille?

What Services are Included in Texas Apostille?

How Long Does the Texas Apostille Process Take?

What documents can be apostilled in Texas?

Can I obtain Apostille services in Austin, Texas?

Is the Texas Apostille form mandatory?

What distinguishes Austin Apostille services from others in Texas?

Are there expedited Apostille services available in Texas?

How does the Texas Secretary of State contribute to Apostille?

Is it possible to apostille a document without notary public in Texas?

Can I manage the Texas Apostille process independently, or is a service necessary?

Table of Contents

  1. Understanding the Basics of Apostille in Texas
    1. Texas Apostille Process Unveiled
      1. Specialized Apostille Services in Austin, Texas
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