Apostilles are authenticating certificates that accompany notarized and other certified public documents exchanged between nations. They are governed by the Hague's 1961 Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents which revamped the traditional series of certificates from various agencies.
Apostilles are widely used for contracts, powers of attorney and international adoptions, as well as many other commercial and private transactions. They allow nations to rely on the security of the documents they are receiving by providing one "seal of approval" from the issuing country.
Not normally. Students needing to present UNM credentials (transcripts or diplomas) to agencies in other countries may need an Apostille. The agency requesting documents will inform you if it is required.
In New Mexico, only The Secretary of State's Office has the authority to issue an Apostille. The web site is New Mexico Secretary of State. The Secretary of State charges a fee for the Apostille and accepts only checks or money orders for this fee. When requesting a transcript or diploma for Apostille, here is the process we recommend.
- Student requests an official transcript or diploma for Apostille to be either picked up or mailed to themselves. Note on the request that it is for Apostille. Please make the Apostille note VERY clear on any request.
- The Registrar's Office notarizes the document, including procuring the signature of the Registrar.
- The Registrar's Office packages the document normally.
- Student receives, or picks up, the document.
- Student prepares the accompanying letter (there is no form) for the Secretary of State indicating where he/she is sending the document.
- Student mails the document, letter, and check or money order for the fee to the Secretary of State's Office.
- The Apostille is affixed to the transcript by The Secretary of State's Office and sent to the foreign address indicated by the student in their letter.
This process does take some time, both to produce the original document and for adding the Apostille by the Secretary of State, so remember to start the process as soon as possible.
More information about Apostilles is available from the following: