Over 150 countries require that all American legal documents contain an apostille, a seal of authentication issued by the State Secretary. The process of obtaining an apostille is simple and inexpensive, yet many organizations charge several hundred dollars for the service. If you live in Florida, follow the steps below to save time and money.
Gather all documents that require authentication. Only Florida state-issued documents can be authenticated with an apostille from the Florida Secretary of State.
Write a cover letter specifying the country where the document will be presented. You can obtain certified copies of documents, such as birth certificates, marriage licenses and vehicle titles, for an additional $10 fee from the Clerk of the Circuit Court. Just add the request to your cover letter.
Enclose the $10 fee for each document that requires an apostille. Use a money order or check. Do not send cash by mail.
Send a self-addressed envelope, along with documentation and fees to: Department of State, Division of Corporations, Apostille Certification, P.O. Box 6800, Tallahassee, Florida 32314-6800. If using a courier service, mail to: Division of Corporations, Clifton Building, 2661 Executive Center Circle, Tallahassee, Florida 32301.
Provide a pre-paid air bill if you want documentation mailed back to you through courier service.
Wait about 10 days before calling (850) 245-6945 to follow up on your request. Florida does not provide walk-in or expedited service.