Additional authentication may be required for university academic documents that will be used abroad. The Office of the University Registrar prepares a notarized affidavit to attest to the validity of the academic document, which may be a diploma (original or copy submitted by student), an official transcript, or an official verification. The notarized affidavit with the academic document attached is then returned to the student or designated representative in the United States to obtain the required authentication from the Secretary of the Commonwealth as described below. Notarized affidavits cannot be mailed outside the United States since the university cannot assume responsibility for international delivery. Contact Certification Services for international delivery options. Authentication of documents may require up to five business days to process by the Office of the University Registrar. Requests must be submitted on the International Authentication Request Form. There is a fee of $20.00 per notarized affidavit. Do not submit fee payment without first verifying charges with Registrar’s Office Certification Services.
If the country where the document will be used is a party to the Hague Apostille Convention, the Virginia Secretary of the Commonwealth will affix an apostille* certificate and no further authentication is necessary. If the country is not party to the Hague Apostille Convention, the Virginia Secretary of the Commonwealth will affix a state authentication certificate. The document should then be sent to the Authentication Office of the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C. to obtain the U.S. Department of State seal. Detailed instructions for authentication processing can be found at the links above. If necessary, authentication of the U.S. Department of State seal should be obtained at the foreign embassy concerned in Washington, D.C.
*What is an Apostille? An apostille is a certificate issued in Virginia by the Secretary of the Commonwealth for documents intended for use in foreign countries party to the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement for Legalization of Foreign Public Documents.