Heart made up of different english words

If you’ve decided to pursue an international adoption, you may be familiar with the term “apostille.”  This term refers the document authentication process necessary to complete your adoption.   

If you’re considering adopting from a foreign country, you first need to determine whether the country you are adopting from is a signatory of the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents (HCCH). If so, the process for certifying your documents will be to obtain an apostille.  If the country is not a signatory to the HCCH, you will have to have the document certified at a state level Secretary of State, the US Department of State, and the Embassy of the country from which you are adopting.  Next, you will need to determine the documents required by the Embassy to complete your adoption. 

No matter the country or the timeframe, Washington Consular Services (WCS) is here for you every step of the way in helping you get your paperwork completed as smoothly as possible, in the timeliest fashion. 

What is an “Apostille?”

An Apostille is a fancy term for authenticating a document that is headed to a Hague Signatory Country overseas. It’s very important to note that only countries that are Hague Convention Signatories will accept an Apostille as a form of document authentication. If the country you are adopting from is NOT a Hague Convention Signatory, your document will need to undergo Embassy Legalization.

Since WCS is located right next to Washington, D.C., we have close access to the necessary government entities and embassies needed for authentication. Instead of running around D.C yourself or jumping from agency to agency, let us focus on the paperwork! All you need to focus on is getting ready for this beautiful and rewarding experience!

Sample Documents 
  • Birth Certificates
  • Marriage Certificates
  • Apostille FBI background check 
  • Divorce Decrees 
  • Home studies 
  • Reference Letters

With WCS on your side, we will handle your document authentication, whether you need an Apostille, or Embassy Legalization. We work diligently to ensure your documents are authenticated appropriately with the correct stamps and certifications, and returned back to you, headache-free. Not sure what kind of authentication your document needs? Contact us today!

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