There are a few states that require County Certification prior to the Secretary of State Apostilled/Authentication.
For example, New York documents will first require NY based documents to be certified by either a NY State Official or a County Clerk on the following documents:
- Any Notarized document
- Birth/ Marriage Certificate
- Divorce/Death Certificate
All documents will require a county clerk certification from the county of where the document was issued.
The first image is a county clerk certification on a birth certificate, this county certification is just stapled onto the original certified birth certificate and it will normally have a raised seal, electronic or pen-in-hand signature. Now this document is ready to obtain the New York Secretary of State Apostille/Authentication.
The second image is a stamped county clerk certification on a certified divorce document. This stamp can either be on the front and or the back of the divorce document. With this stamp the document can now obtain the New York Secretary of State Apostille/Authentication.
By the way the NY Secretary of State is called the NY Department of State not to be confused with the U.S Department of State as this Federal agency is in Washington DC. If you just need an Apostille on the NY document, your document will not have to come to DC for Dept. of State Authentication
If your document is receiving the NY Authentication (not Apostille) then your document will have to come to U.S Department of State Authentication office after the NY Authentication.
If your Birth or Death Certificate is issued by the New York City Department of Health, it will require a Letter of Explication- this letter is often time only given when requesting a new birth/death certificate. Both Letter of Explication and birth/death certificate must be certified by the County Clerk before obtaining the NY Apostille.
I know the above may be confusing however we are here to help. Simply send us an e-mail explaining or showing us your document (we need to know State where it was issued and any type of signatures, raised seals, stamps) so we can determine the best course of action.
We do process all documents that need:
- County Clerk Certification
- Some New York City documents that need the Letter of Exemplification
- Secretary of State Apostille/Authentication
- Department of State Authentication (for both Apostille & non Apostille countries)
- Embassy legalization (for non Apostille counties)
- Apostille for all States in the U.S.
Call us now for a free review
(703) 901-6773 or send us an e-mail at