Consular Officers perform notarial services customarily provided by Notaries Public in the United States. Persons requiring such services should visit the Consular Section during our public hours. A fee of $50 is required for each seal. All documents to be notarized must be in English and must be intended for use by an American citizen or for use in the United States. The Consular Section does not provide translation services for documents to be notarized.
Requirements for Notary Services
- Passport, or other government issued photo identification
- Appear in person
- Understand the documents to be notarized
Types of Notarial Services
The Consular Section offers two main types of notarial services:
- Oath (Affidavit): An oath is a written statement or declaration sworn to, or affirmed before, a consular official such as for individuals planning to marry a Lao citizen or for individuals applying for a long-term Thai visa.
- Acknowledgement: An acknowledgement is the consular officer’s declaration that the named individual appeared before him/her and has acknowledged that the signature of a document is his/her own signature, that s/he understands the document, and has signed of his/her own free will.
In rare instances, the Consular Section may be able to provide the following service:
- Authentication: An authentication is the certification of the genuineness of a signature of a notary or government official. Documents that may require an authentication include legal instruments notarized by foreign notaries.
Please note that the Consular Section is not authorized to certify copies of documents issued by a foreign or domestic agency. To obtain certifications in these cases, please have the office that issued the documents certify them.
What happens if my document requires a witness?
If your document needs a witness, you should plan to provide the necessary witnesses or you may be able to find someone in the ACS waiting room that is willing to act in that capacity. If no one is available in the waiting room to act as a witness, you may need to postpone the notary. The consular officer and local staff are not permitted to act as witnesses.
Why was my notary refused?
Consular officers can refuse to perform a notarial service if they have reason to believe that the document will be used for purpose patently unlawful or not in the best interests on the United States. In addition, consular officers can postpone a notarial if the customer cannot demonstrate that he or she understands the nature and language of the document and comprehends the significance of the act, or in cases where the signatory is acting under duress.
Signature (or "Medallion") Guarantees
A Medallion Signature Guarantee is not a notarial service, but rather a special procedure related to securities, which can only be performed by an authorized representative of a financial institution participating in a medallion program approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). U.S. consular officers are not authorized to provide a signature guarantee/medallion guarantee service.
For more information, please visit the State Department’s website
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