Before you mail us your marriage certificate, please make sure to get the certified copy from your county with the signature of the county clerk. Generally, marriage certificate that has the signature of the county clerk can be authenticated directly at the secretary of state.
A. Marriage Certificate Authentication Procedure
The procedure of marriage certificate authentication is different according to the State which issued the document.
STEP ONE: County Clerk Authentication
Some states require marriage certificates to be authenticated by County Clerk prior to state authentication. For example, marriage certificates and the Letter of Exemplification issued from the Department of Health of New York City should be authenticated by County Clerk before New York State certification.
Note: Different States have different requirements, some states do not need County Clerk authentication before state certification. If you want to learn more detail, please contact us.
STEP TWO:The Secretary of State Certification
The Secretary of State issues both Authentication Certificates and Apostilles. The determination of which certificate is issued is based on the country in which the document will be used. Authentication Certificates are issued for documents which are destined for use in countries that are not parties to the Hague Apostille Convention. Apostille Certificates are issued for documents destined for use in countries that are parties to the Hague Apostille Convention. For example, if your documents will be used in China, you will need authentication certificates.
The authentication processing time varies in different state. Usually, it takes one to three weeks. Some states offer expedited service, some don’t. For more information, please contact us.
- Normally, if your document is issued by the district court or state security department, it can be authenticated directly by the Secretary of State.
- Some states require marriage certificates and marriage certificates must be issued from the Department of Health or Circuit Court within the past 12 months.
STEP THREE: The US Department of State Certification
Authentication staff of the US Department of State will receive documents and perform an initial review during 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. Monday through Friday (except federal holidays). It is also required to pick up one’s completed certificate(s) between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. on the cited date.
To save the trouble, you may use our service on this step. When you create a new order, you need to choose code “DC” on the “Issued by state” column.
STEP FOUR: The Chinese Embassy/Consulate General Authentication
The People’s Republic of China currently maintains one Embassy in Washington D.C., but also maintains 5 consulates-general in the following U.S. cities: New York, NY; Chicago, IL; San Francisco, CA; Los Angeles, CA; Houston, TX. Each Embassy or consulate-general hold consular jurisdiction over specific states.
Your legalization application may be rejected by the Embassy/Consulate General that does not hold consular jurisdiction over the state where your document is executed.
When deciding which embassy/consulate-general to go, you should check the state that issued the document, not where you reside.
B. How To Place An Order
- Online submit your order
- Mail all required documents to our office
- For our service fee you can check here.
C. Required Documents
- The original and photocopy of your marriage certificate
- One fully completed and signed Notarization/Authentication Application Form
- Photocopies of both couple’s passport information page. Other copies of valid ID may be acceptable, such as driver’s license, green card, et.al. If your passport has been renewed or noted, photocopies of the related pages are required as well. If the applicants are not U.S. citizen, photocopy of immigrant status or green card might be needed in some consular-general.
- Check or money order if you choose this payment method.
D. Payment Methods
- Cash payment: available for walk in clients, please do not send us cash by mail
- Money order: can be purchased at the post office, CVS, Western Union and other locations
- Check: please make your check payable to: Laroz International Business, Inc.
- PayPal payment: please pay to firstname.lastname@example.org. You need to pay a service fee to PayPal: $1.00 for the amount < = $20, and 5% for the amount of $20 – $60, 3.5%-5% for amount > = $60. Clients who lives in China may find PayPal more convenient than other payment methods.
You are welcomed to consult us with specific authentication questions relating to marriage certificate. You can entrust Laroz for all three step authentication.Laroz provides basic certification related information, but does not guarantee the correctness and completeness. We are not responsible for any consequence due to incorrect or incomplete information.