What is an Apostille, and why would any traveler need one? When you’re traveling outside of the US, it’s safe to say many of the things you take for granted no longer apply: you’re subject to local laws, your state-issued driver’s license isn’t a recognized form of ID, and any documents issued by the US government may not even be accepted without additional certification. This is where Apostille certification is needed; if a country falls under the Hague Convention, an Apostille must be presented along with the original document to be accepted in a foreign country for any reason – visa application, applying for citizenship, etc.
For travelers, this means that documents including birth certificates and university diplomas that were issued at the state level in the US may be recognized in certain countries provided an Apostille certification is applied. However, documents like criminal background checks issued at the federal level by the FBI require an Apostille issued directly from the State Department in Washington DC.
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As one of the major US hubs for flights heading to South American, Miami has millions of tourists and business travelers pass through every year. Consulates with visa services are scattered throughout the south, and the Florida Secretary of State – the office responsible for issuing Apostilles – is based near the capitol building in Tallahassee. In Miami, there are a few options to sort through to get an Apostille. State-issued certifications like the ones distributed in Tallahassee are only valid for documents issued locally, e.g. University of Florida transcripts.
When it comes time to obtain that certificate which allows your documents to be accepted in foreign countries, applicants have the options of mailing it in or applying in person. If you’re based in Miami and needing state-issued Apostilles from Tallassee and federally-issued Apostilles from Washington DC, this isn’t convenient. Shipping documents to the Secretary of State requires waiting a few days or weeks for them to be accepted, the office to apply the Apostille, and to be sent back to you. When your travel plans may not include this extra time, what are the options left to you? Mailing everything a piece at a time and hoping for the best? Most likely, you’ll be facing a delayed departure and a potentially invalid visa or passport.
In Miami, when you know you need an Apostille with your visa application or require any other help in the visa or passport application process, Travel Visa Pro should be your first stop. Instead of sending in the applications you need one at a time, take the all-in-one solution of Travel Visa Pro. We can reduce the wait at every step by offering the services you need at just one of our offices. Even if you don’t live close to Miami, mailing your visa and passport applications and documents to the local TVP office can substantially reduce the wait time and eliminate the stress of traveling. Travel Visa Pro’s team of travel experts have over forty years’ experience getting our clients the travel documents they need in the time they need.