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  • Legalization Services

    Understanding Our Legalization Services

    Legalization Services

    Did you know that Swift offers document legalization services? Whether you are a longtime resident of the United States, a new citizen, or someone visiting for a short time, you may find yourself in need of legalization services.

    Legalization services don’t have anything to do with citizenship. Instead, legalization refers to the verifying of foreign documents by another country. For example, if you have court papers from Canada that you need legally recognized in the United States, you’ll have to go through the process of legalization.

    How does legalization work?

    Legalization can be a bit of a complicated process. Typically, the document needs to be translated, notarized, taken to the secretary of State, and then to the foreign consulate. Swift can determine which of these steps you will need to complete to get your document(s) legalized, as the type of document and country you are working with will effect the process.

    What is apostille?

    Apostille services are one step simpler. Under the Hague Convention, 110 countries have agreed to a set process for recognizing legal documents from one another’s countries. This means that if you have a document from one of these countries and you need it recognized in another of these countries, the process is simplified. You will not need to get your document notarized following apostille, because an apostille certificate works much in the same way that a notarization does.

    How does apostille work?

    When you receive an apostille for a document, you will be given a form with a series of numbered fields, all filled out by the issuing country. This form will legally verify the legitimacy of your document in the country that you receive the apostille form in.

    What kinds of documents need to be legalized?

    Types of documents that you might need legalized can include court documents, administrative documents, and official certificates. Some of the most common documents that need to be legalized include birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates, divorce decrees, school transcripts, and diplomas.

    Which countries recognize apostille?

    The 110 countries that are part of the Hague Convention all recognize apostille. These countries include the United States and all members of the European Union. Interestingly, Canada is not a Hague Convention country.

    I have a document that I need legalized. What do I do?

    Simple, contact us! We can walk you through our legalization and apostille services and help you get your document recognized as quickly and easily as possible.

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