As a follow-up from last week’s post, once you receive your Certificate to Foreign Government (CFG) you may have additional steps to take before a customer can use the document. This entails having the document Authenticated or Apostillized – the difference between the two depends on which country your customer resides in. The Apostille provides verification that a government-issued form, signature, seal, or stamp on a document is genuine. It ensures that a document issued in one signatory country is recognized as valid in another.
An Apostille is issued for documents being sent to countries that are members of The Hague Convention. (The Hague Conventions were held in 1899 and 1907, and were one of the first to regulate behavior during war time – including war crimes, law of war and disarmament.) There are currently 78 countries that are members of this convention. An Authentication is issued for those countries which are not members of The Hague Convention. Both certifications are issued by the U.S. Department of State, and there is a fee to have them completed. Attached is a sample of an Authentication.
Additionally, depending on the country, you may need to send the whole packet (CFG and Authentication/Apostille certificate) to the country’s consulate office after receiving the Authentication. Typically, this is done for non-Hague Convention countries.