Updated January 16, 2021
This site is owned and operated by USA Apostille, Inc.
- Your information: We physically store your personal information (Example: order form, credit card authorization form, translation request form, supporting documentation, copies of your documents, etc..) for up to three years. After three, they are destroyed by a professional shredding company (Example: Shred-it Company). Information emailed to us may be stored for a longer period of time. We are very careful with information received and take strict precautions to protect your sensitive information. Information shared with third parties, independent contractors, and affiliates are also held to the highest security standards. Your information will never be sold.
- Tracking Software: When you provide us your information, you agree to allow us to contact you by email, phone, text message, and regular mail. You also agree that we may add you to our newsletter. When you visit our web site, you agree that tracking software may be placed on your computer (Cookies) from third party companies (Example: Google, Live Chat Software, etc…) which will allow us to provide you relevant and helpful information.
- Acceptance of Your Documents by Another Country: USA Apostille, Inc. cannot guarantee that another country will accept your documents under any circumstance even if the Secretary of State’s office has attached an apostille. We also cannot guarantee that another country will accept your documents once they have been certified by the Secretary of State, the US Department of State (if required), and the Embassy or Consulate office (Legalization Process for Non-Hague Apostille Countries).When you mail in your documents to our apostille offices, you agree that you have verified them with the country requesting your documents. As long as the state attaches the apostille or certificate (Non-Hague Country) to your documents, we have fulfilled our obligation of service. We recommend that you check with the people/government requesting your documents in order to confirm that they will accept the documents that you plan to mail in to our office for processing. Even though an apostille does not have an expiration date, some countries may request your documents to be no older than a specific period of time (Example: three months or less for an FBI background check apostille). Please, double check with the country requesting your documents in order to avoid any delays or additional costs.
- Return Shipping: Our current shipping carrier of choice is FedEx. We provide FREE FedEx return shipping for completed orders in it’s entirety within the USA. If you choose to have some of your documents returned before the entire order is complete, there will be an addition FedEx return shipping fee. If your return address is a business address, you can elect to have your documents delivered without a signature. Once your order has been completed and dropped off at the FedEx shipping center, we cannot be held responsible on how long they take to deliver your documents back to your return address nor can we make a promise that they will deliver on time. Remember, their delivery time is estimated and not guaranteed. Be sure to include your email address on the order form so FedEx can provide you an update by e-mail regarding your return shipping. Due to company policy, we are unable to change the return address listed on the order form. So please plan accordingly. Also, please note that FedEx doe not deliver to a P.O. Box address. If your package is undeliverable and returned back to our office, you agree to pay $35 for the FedEx return shipping fee and an additional $35 fee to ship your documents back to the return address. Documents returned internationally will incur a $200 FedEx/UPS return fee in addition to another $100 FedEx/UPS international shipping fee to ship the document back to you. If you should have any questions regarding your FedEx shipment, please call FedEx Customer Care at: 1-800-463-3339. UPS can be reached at 1-800-742-5877.
- Saturday delivery fee: We no longer provide Saturday delivery.
- International shipping: If you choose to elect to have your documents shipped outside of the USA, you will be charged a flat rate fee of $100 (FedEx International priority shipping). Delivering to some countries may cost more (Example: Ukraine, Russia, etc…) We can ship documents to most return addresses outside of the United States. We do not provide international overnight shipping. Please note that your return address must be written in English. Our flat rate FedEx international priority shipping fee is $100. Once your order is complete, it will be dropped off at the FedEx shipping center. Once your order is dropped off at the FedEx shipping center, we cannot be held responsible on how long FedEx will take to deliver your documents back to your international return address nor can we make a promise that FedEx will deliver on time. There is no refund for international shipping if FedEx is not able to deliver your documents on-time. In order to avoid an international shipping fee, you can mail in a pre-paid and pre-printed FedEx, UPS, or DHL shipping label. Please note that there is a one day delay in shipping out your documents if you provide us an airbill from DHL or UPS. If you should have any questions regarding your FedEx shipment, please call FedEx Customer Care at: 1-800-463-3339.
- Inter-office Shipping fee: There is an additional FedEx overnight shipping fee of $35 to ship your documents to the correct office if you originally mail in your documents to the wrong office. For example, if you mail in a California document to our New York office. Also, some orders may require additional processing (Example: US Department of State, Embassy, Consulate etc…) and can incur additional shipping fees.
- Charge-backs: If you believe you are a victim of fraud or if you are having trouble with your order, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org You can also contact our Customer Service department at 1-800-850-3441. For international callers, please call 1-202-894-6554. Our customer service department is open Monday – Saturday from 9am to 6pm to answer your questions. You can also complete our order status or our billing inquiry form and one of our agents will contact you within one business day or less. If you do contact your credit card company an initiate a charge-back, please note that we will submit all documentation to the merchant processor including a copy of your order form, credit card authorization form, translation request form, copy of all of your documents, copy of the apostille or state certificates, the FedEx delivery confirmation, all e-mail communications, and any other documents we deem necessary in order to justify the charge. Furthermore, your case will be handed to our corporate attorney for review and/or we will submit your account to collections.
- Bounced Checks – If your check bounces, you agree to pay a penalty fee of $45 for each check. We accept personal or business checks from the following banks: Chase, Wells Fargo, and Bank of America. Personal or business checks must be made payable to Richard Johnston. Please include the check with your order.
- Processing of Documents: Please mail in the documents you want us to process. Do not mail in documents you don’t want us to process. For example, if you only want us to apostille one birth certificate, do not send in two. We are unable to obtain originals or certified copies and can only process what you mail in. Please mail in the originals issued by the County, Court, State, or US Federal Government. Do not mail in Xerox black and white or color copies of your vital record documents. Do not mail in a laminated document. If for some reason we are unable to process your documents, we will contact you with instructions by email and phone. Please note that during the Holiday season (November 15 to January 15) there can be delays in processing your documents.
- Fraud: Do not attempt to defraud us. If we suspect we are victim of fraud, we will void your documents with the Secretary of State, the US Department of State in Washington, DC, and report the fraud to the local Consulate or Embassy office. We will also report the fraud to the FBI, the Department of Justice from the State your documents originate from, and the local police department near you. Furthermore, your case will be handed to our corporate attorney for review and/or we will submit your account to collections.
- Cancellations: There is no refund or cancellations once we receive your order. If you decide to cancel before your order is delivered to our office, please contact the shipping company and request that your documents be rerouted back to you. We cannot cancel orders we have not received. You are responsible to pay for every order that you mail in for processing. Also, orders we are unable to process will be returned by regular USPS first class mail. You can also provide us a prepaid and pre-printed UPS/FedEx/USPS airbill and we will drop off your documents at the shipping center as soon as possible.
- Apostille Fees: The cost to apostille your documents is listed on our Schedule of State and Federal Fees.
- Incorrect Certification/Apostille attached by the State: Apostilles and State certificates are attached by the State office (Secretary of State). If the State makes an error and attaches a certificate instead of an apostille or vice-versa or if the state makes any other mistake (Example: Certifying the wrong public official), you agree to mail back your documents to our office for correction at your expense. There are no refunds or credits issued for this error. We will correct the mistake with the State at our expense and return the documents back to you by FedEx at no additional cost. You will be responsible to ship the documents back to our office at your expense.
- Embassy and Consulate Fees: The cost to certify and legalize your documents is listed under our Schedule of Embassy and Consulate Fees. Please note that our Embassy or Consulate drop off and pick-up fees are non-refundable. If we are unable to legalize your documents at any Embassy or Consulate office, we will refund you the Embassy or Consulate fees paid for each document (Document fee). Our drop-off and pick-up fees are non-refundable. Please note that we cannot be held responsible if another country does not accept your documents for any reason. You agree to provide the Embassy or Consulate all documentation they request to complete your order including a translation of your document if requested. The fees quoted are estimated and can increase at any time. If the Embassy or Consulate charges more than what we quoted you in the estimate, you agree to pay the difference and we will charge your credit card to do so.
- Estimated Processing Time: Our processing time is estimated and is not guaranteed. We cannot be held responsible if the County Clerk, Court, State, US Federal Government, Embassy, Consulate or the shipping company takes longer to process or ship your documents than we estimated nor will we issue a discount, credit, credit the difference, or issue a refund. Once your order is complete, it will be dropped off at the local FedEx shipping center. Note: The amount of time needed to process your documents is listed under the number of business days on our Schedule of State and Federal Fees. Please note that this number is a good faith estimate and may change depending on the volume of work received at our offices, the resources available at the Secretary of State’s offices, and the resources available at the Embassy or Consulate office. The number of business days does not take into consideration the FedEx/UPS shipping to and from the State and the FedEx/UPS shipping back to your return address. We recommend that you do not book any appointments or make any reservations until your documents are complete and delivered back to your return address. Please note that during the Holiday season (November 15 to January 15) there can be delays in processing your documents.
- Oversized documents: Please contact us if your documents are larger than 8.5 x 14 and or weigh more than 0.30lb. Please note that all documents returned to you that are larger than 8.5 x 14 will be folded in order to fit the FedEx legal size envelope. If the cost to ship your documents is more than what we typically pay for, we will contact you.
- Diplomas: All diplomas larger than 8.5 x 11 will be folded in order to fit the FedEx return envelope. Please, do not mail in the glass frame or the leatherette cover that your diploma is placed in by the High School, College or University. Do not mail in a laminated diploma. Please note that your diploma will be folded, stapled, stamped, and handled by several people. We recommend that you contact the school and order a fresh new copy so you can display on your wall. Your diploma will need to be notarized by the school’s registrar before you mail it in for processing. More information here:
Apostille a Diploma and Apostille a Transcript
- Order of documents: Please staple your documents together before you ship them to our office. If your documents arrive unstapled, they will be stapled together before they are processed. The Secretary of State will not accept unstapled documents.
- Money Back Guarantee: If we are unable to obtain an apostille for your document(s), we will refund you 100%. Please note that if your documents are rejected because of improper notarization, you agree to pay us $125 non-refundable fee every time the County or State office rejects your documents. Note: Documents improperly notarized and returned by the State are assessed a $125 non-refundable fee. If your documents require notarization, please be sure to find an experienced notary public with a minimum of 5 years of service. In additional to the notary’s stamp and signature, the notary must also include proper notarial wording on the documents. If the notary makes a mistake, your documents will be rejected by the State and you will have to start over costing you time and money.
- Lost Documents: You agree to hold us harmless for documents which are lost beyond our control. We only have control when documents are in our physical possession. Documents in the possession of an affiliate, virtual office, shipping company (UPS, FedEx, DHL, USPS, etc…), County Clerk office, Court, Secretary of State’s office, US Federal Government office, Embassy office, and/or Consulate office is beyond our control and we cannot be held responsible if they lose, damage, keep, alter or destroy your documents. We recommend that you have a second set of each original or certified copy in case there is an issue with the first set.
- Missing Documents: If you have been charged for the service and your documents have gone missing from the Secretary of State’s office or with FedEx, you agree to allow us 21 calendar days to locate your documents after we have discovered/notified they are missing. If after 21 calendar days we are unable to locate your documents, we will issue you a full refund. 99% percent of the time, missing documents are returned within two weeks. This refund does not apply to documents that are marked as delivered to the return address listed on the order forms you complete (Your return address).
- Translation of Documents: Please review our Translation Request Form.
- Improper notarization: Documents improperly notarized and returned by the State or County Clerk are assessed a $125 non-refundable fee. If your documents require notarization, please be sure to find an experienced notary public with a minimum of 5 years of service. In additional to the notary’s stamp and signature, the notary must also include proper notarial wording on the documents. If the notary makes a mistake, your documents will be rejected by the State and you will have to start over costing you time and money.
- County Clerk Authentication: Some States require a notarized document to also be authenticated by the County Clerk. These States include: Hawaii, Kentucky, Maryland, New York, and Tennessee. Please review our Schedule of State and Federal Fees.
- Jurisdiction: The jurisdiction of any and all lawsuits filed against USA Apostille, Inc. is in Los Angeles, CA. USA Apostille, Inc. is a California Corporation owned and operated by Richard M. Johnston.
- Independent Contractors: We reserve the right to hire independent contractors and third parties to assist us in our day-to-day operations.
- Company Holiday’s Observed: Our offices are closed on New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday (Day after Thanksgiving), Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.
- Failure to Select Service Level on Order Form: If you fail to circle the service level on the first page of the order form, the fee and processing time will default to the basic service and cannot be changed.
What US State are your documents from?