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The US Department of Justice Certification Service

Why does your document need the U.S. Department of Justice certification?

If a document issued by a federal court is going to be used in other countries outside of the United States, the document should have a preliminary certification from the U.S. Department of Justice. After the seal of the US DOJ is on the document, it may be further apostilled or authenticated by the U.S. Department of State.

What documents are issued by the federal courts?

The US Federal Court System

Federal courts handle all immigration, bankruptcy, copyright, patent, and criminal cases that involve violations of federal laws. The federal courts are divided into three levels: the United States Supreme Court, the United States Courts of Appeals, and the United States District Courts. Here is a full list of federal courts in the U.S.

The most common documents issued by the federal courts we process include,

  • Petition for Name Change issued by a district court (federal court)

  • US District Court judgments and orders

  • US Bankruptcy Court records, etc.

What does the U.S. Department of Justice Certification look like?

The US Department of Justice Certification or Apostille Sample
The US Department of Justice Certification Sample

Apostille or Authentication Process for documents issued by federal courts

Step 1: Obtain a certified original document or a certified copy from the federal court. The document must have the seal and authorized signature of the issuing court.

Step 2: The document must be sent to the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington D.C. for certification.

Step 3: Send the certified document to the U.S. Department of State for an apostille or authentication.

An Apostille is for documents to be used in countries that participated in the 1961 Hague Convention Treaty. Once complete, this is the last step, and no more steps are needed. It is ready to be used in foreign countries.

Authentication certificates are for documents to be used in countries that do not participate in the 1961 Hague Convention Treaty. The documents undergo an additional step for obtaining legalization from the destination country's embassy in Washington D.C.

Step 4: In case the document is sent to the non-Hague apostille countries, full legalization is needed. The already authenticated document should be sent to the embassy located in Washington D.C. for legalization.

The Current Processing Time of certification, apostille, and authentication is listed on this page.

The DOJ certification, apostille, and authentication process can be complicated. If you don't want to spend a lot of time and energy getting into it, your best bet is to let a professional do it for you. Once we receive your order and document, it'll be processed as soon as possible.


American Notary Service Center Inc. provides fair, fast, confidential, and professional document notarization and certification services for our clients. We also provide various assistance services to small businesses led by socially and economically disadvantaged groups. Our service helps small businesses obtain federal government contracts, gain a foothold in the market, and boost their sales. For more information, please visit our website at, and contact us by calling 202-599-0777 or by email at


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