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Apostille / Authentication

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Apostille/Authentication of Diplomas

Under the Hague Convention of 1961, signatory countries have agreed to recognize public documents issued by other signatory countries if those public documents are authenticated by the attachment of an internationally recognized form of authentication know as an “apostille.”  The apostille ensures that public documents issued in one signatory country will be recognized as valid in another signatory country.

There are three steps that occur for your diploma to be authenticated:
  1. Your diploma or copy must be certified by Clarkson University and notarized by a notary public.
  2. The diploma must then be presented to the St. Lawrence Country Clerk’s office to certify the authenticity of the notary public.
  3. The diploma is then sent onto the New York State Department of State for apostille/authentication.

Note:  If you are using the diploma in a country not listed in the signatory countries, you will need to contact the Embassy or Consulate of the country where you intend to use the document to discuss their authentication requirements.  Some non-signatory countries may accept an Apostille.  Others may require further steps.

To request an apostille/authentication of your diploma:
  1. Print and complete the Apostille/Authentication Request Form.
  2. Determine if the diploma needs to be an original or if a copy will suffice.  If an original diploma is required and you no longer have the original, a duplicate diploma can be ordered at the time of your Apostille request.
  3. Mail the Apostille/Authentication Request Form along with the following:
    • Original or copy of your diploma.
    • Payment in the form of a check payable to St. Lawrence County Clerk ($3.00 per document)

      If you require State Apostille/Certification, submit the following:
    • Completed NYS Department of State Apostille/Certification of Authentication Request form
    • Form of payment as indicated on the request ($10.00 per document); and
    • A pre-addressed, postage-paid envelope. This envelope will be used by the NYS Secretary of State to mail the document to the address provided by you.
  4. Mail all required documents to:
    Student Administrative Services
    Clarkson University
    PO Box 5575 - 8 Clarkson Avenue
    Potsdam, NY 13699-5575

Once all the above documentation is received, Student Administration will:
  1. Verify the student’s record to ensure there are no holds that would prohibit processing.
  2. Notarize the diploma.
  3. Present the notarized diploma to the St. Lawrence County Clerk’s office for authentication.
  4. Mail the notarized diploma with the completed NYS Department of Apostille/Certification of Authentication Request form with your payment and pre-addressed, postage-paid envelope.

The Apostille process can be very complicated and will usually take two to three weeks.  We are happy to help you navigate through this process.  Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns about your request. 

Questions? Contact Student Administrative Services at (315) 268-6451 or email

A comprehensive description of the Apostille is available at the NYS Secretary of State or the U.S. Department of State, Authentications Office websites.