Authentication Services: Apostilles & Legalizations




If you need to use a corporate document outside of the United States (eg: to open a bank account or register the company in a foreign country) it will probably need to be authenticated in order to be considered valid. An authentication certifies the signature and the position of the official who has executed, issued, or certified a copy of the document, and where appropriate, the identity of the seal of stamp it bears. The type of authentication required depends on the country the document will be used in. Typically methods of authentication include having an apostille attached by the Secretary of State or being legalized through a country’s embassy or consulate. Neither method of authentication validates the content of the document.





Apostilles



About Apostilles | View a Sample Apostille Online | How to Obtain an Apostille | Costs to Obtain an Apostille | How long does it take?



What is an apostille?



An apostille is a form of authentication issued for documents that will be used in countries that are part of the international “Convention de le Haye du 5 Octobre 1961,” also known as “The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirements of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents, or simply the Hague Convention. The convention eliminates the need for authentication above the level of the Secretary of State which made authentication much more practical. For a list of countries that are signatories to the Hague and that accept apostilles visit the HCCH website.



An apostille is a one-page certificate attached to another document, such as a certified copy of a Certificate of Incorporation or a Certificate of Good Standing. Apostilles are also often requested for private corporate documents (eg: Bylaws, Operating Agreements, or Powers of Attorney).



View a sample apostille (PDF)



How do I obtain an apostille?



Delaware Intercorp, Inc. can assist you with obtaining an apostille on documentation that is on file with or obtained from the Delaware Division of Corporations. Should you require an apostille for a private corporate document, we can also assist you with this process through our Document Custodian Service.



To order an apostille, please contact us by email. We will need the following information to process your request:



  1. The name(s) of the document(s) that you require an apostille(s) for*

  2. The country the apostille is intended to be used in.

  3. Whether you require regular or expedited service (if applicable)

  4. Your shipping address for the order



* If there is more than one document involved, please also let us know if you want all documents bundled together under one apostille, or if you require a separate apostille for each document. In some cases, it may not be possible to obtain one apostille on a set of documents. Our service team will work personally with you to help you determine what you are able to obtain based your circumstances.



What are the costs to obtain an apostille?



Delaware Intercorp, Inc. can assist you with obtaining an apostille starting as low as $80.00. Ultimately the total cost will vary depending on a number of factors, but once we understand your needs, we will be able to provide you with an accurate quote and payment instructions. Credit card payment can be made online for fastest service. Once the apostille has been issued by and received from the Secretary of State, we will ship the order to the requested address.



How long will it take to obtain an apostille?



The whole process can take between one business day and three to four weeks depending on the order specifications.

Delaware Intercorp, Inc. has a direct line to the Secretary of State’s computer and can offer same day service without any expedited fees for the retrieval of apostilles for State-issued documents.

The process of obtaining an apostille for a private document typically takes the State 14-21 business days with regular service. It is possible to request 24-hour expedited service for $75.00.

If you have questions about having Delaware Intercorp, Inc. assist you with obtaining an apostille, please email or call us at (302)266-9367 to speak with a service representative.



Legalization



About Document Legalization | Legalization Illustration | How to Legalize Documents | Costs to Legalize Documents | How long does it take?



What is legalization?



Countries that are not signatories of the Hague typically must have documents authenticated through a more complicated process known as legalization or the “chain authentication method.” This process involves authentication at both the State and the embassy or consulate for the country where the document will be used. Most embassies also require the document to be authenticated by the U.S Department of State as a prerequisite.



View a flowchart illustrating the document legalization process (PDF)



How do I start to get my documents legalized?



Delaware Intercorp, Inc. can assist you with the legalization process for documents pertaining to your Delaware Company that have been certified by the Secretary of State of Delaware. Should you require legalization for a private corporate document, we can assist you with this process through our Document Custodian Service.



To hire Delaware Intercorp, Inc. to assist you with having your documents legalized, please contact us by email. Please provide us with the following information so that we may process your request:



  1. The name(s) of the document(s) that you require legalization for.

  2. The name of the embassy the documents need to be legalized at.

  3. Whether you require regular or expedited service at the State, if applicable and/or embassy level (where available).

  4. If there is more than one document involved, please also let us know if you want all documents legalized together as a set, or if you require a separate legalization for each document. In some cases, it will be necessary to have the documents legalized as separate sets.

  5. Your shipping address for the order



Please note that each embassy has its own regulations and requirements for the legalization process. For example, some embassies require a client-completed application and/or powers of attorney in favor of Delaware Intercorp, Inc. Once we have received your request, our service team will work personally with you to obtain all of the proper documentation required in order to begin the document legalization process.



What are document legalization costs?



There is a base fee for document legalization that is determined based upon the registered agent relationship of your entity with Delaware Intercorp, Inc..

    If we are providing you with registered agent services:



  • The base fee for document legalization is $275.00.




    If we are not providing you with registered agent services:



  • The base fee for document legalization is $400.00.




The base fee includes the State of Delaware authentication charges and US Department of State authentication as well as all domestic courier charges and walk in servicing for the embassy/consulate and State Department in Washington DC. Embassy costs, expedited processing (if required/available), and return shipping to your location would be additional charges.

Although the total cost and process will vary depending on a number of factors, once we understand your needs, we will be able to provide you with an accurate quote and the necessary embassy requirements to assist you with your document legalization needs. Credit card payment can be made online for fastest service. When the legalized documentation has been received back from the embassy or consulate, we will ship the order to the requested address.



How long will it take to legalize my documentation?



Processing times can vary depending on your order specifications. Generally, the whole process usually takes between one week and six weeks. Delaware Intercorp, Inc. will assist you with determining how long the legalization process may take for your specific request and what options are available so that you can expedite the process with the State of Delaware and the Embassy or Consulate should you desire to do so.

If you have questions about the document legalization process for your Delaware entity, please email or call us at (302)266-9367 to speak with a service representative.



Document Custodian Service



About the Document Custodian Service | Document Custodian Service Costs | Document Custodian Service Terms Of Use



What is Delaware Intercorp, Inc.’s Document Custodian Service?



The document custodian service was developed to assist our clients with storing and maintaining private corporate records. This service can be used to obtain a notary certification for private corporate documents that require authentication via apostille or legalization.



How does the Document Custodian Service work?



You may hire Delaware Intercorp, Inc. to act as custodian of records for specific documents pertaining to your company. Delaware Intercorp, Inc. will keep an image of the corporate documents provided to us by the client in our electronic files. When requested and upon payment of the appropriate fees, we will certify a copy as existing in our files. Upon request, and payment of appropriate fees, we will use that certification to request an apostille or Delaware authentication thereof. This service is available either separately or concurrently with the agency relationship between Delaware Intercorp, Inc. and the client company.



What does the Document Custodian Service cost?



The cost for this service can vary depending on your current relationship with Delaware Intercorp, Inc.



    If we are providing you with registered agent services:



  • There is no annual fee for the document custodian service.

  • The fee for acting as custodian is $30.00 per record.



    If we are not providing you with registered agent services:



  • There is an initial setup fee for the document custodian service. This is a $100.00 fee and includes service for 1 document.

  • The fee for acting as custodian for additional documents is $30.00 per record.

  • There is an annual fee to continue to act as document custodian for your records. This is a $100.00 flat fee, which is due August 1st each year.



What are the terms for using the Document Custodian Service?



Please review our Custodial Service Terms of Use (below) for additional information.



View the Document Custodian Service Terms Of Use (PDF)



If you have questions about the document custodian service for your Delaware entity, please email or call us at (302) 266-9367 to speak with a service representative.





Incorporate Online