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Meta: Document authentication is a multi-step procedure involving authentication by the foreign embassy.


Documents which are destined to be presented in a foreign country must undergo a procedure of authentication. If the target jurisdiction is not party to The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement for Legalization of Foreign Public Documents, then foreign authentication is a must. The procedure is a multi-level process which involves cooperation of local authorities, state authorities, federal government and the consulate or even the embassy of a foreign country.

Each country sets forth their unique rules and requirements for authentication, legalization and attestation procedures. Depending on the type of documents in question such procedures may vary significantly in terms of form of the document, processing time, certification levels and the fees.

Authenticating, legalizing and attesting documents for foreign use is an intricate procedure that must be managed properly on each step of the entire process. To successfully perform such task it is crucial to have all the required information well beforehand. Many consulates and embassies require official certified translation of the documents to be presented with the originals, while others may require an appointment for document submission.

Another caveat is that even though your target country does not require legalization by the embassy, the foreign authorities may still require attestation from the consulate. This is a normal procedure and may embassies will perform the services.

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