A power of attorney is a blank legal document that gives another party the authority to act on your behalf in a legal or financial matter. An apostille is a certification provided under the Apostille Convention of 1961 for documents to be used in countries that participate in the convention. Countries that have not signed the convention can still request an authentication of documents.
A notarized or certified copy of a Power of Attorney may be used in another country if that country is a signatory on The Hague Convention. The Hague Convention is a multilateral treaty that establishes the methods of validation for foreign public documents. The treaty was signed in 1961 and the United States became a member in 1981.
For a U.S. issued document to be valid in another country which is a member of the The Hague Convention, it must be apostilled or legalized by the Secretary of State where it was originally notarized. In the U.S., this would typically be the Secretary of State office in the state where the notary public is commissioned.
If the country you are using the document in is not a signatory on The Hague Convention, you will need to check with the Embassy of that country to determine what type of certification will be necessary. Apostilles are obtained through the New Jersey Secretary of State. In the U.S., you can apostille documents issued by the federal government, a state government, a county government, or a city government. This includes birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates, divorce decrees, and more.
In order to get an apostille for a Power of Attorney in New Jersey, you will need to contact the consulate of the country you are going to. They will be able to tell you what documents they require and how to get them apostilled.
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