Documents issued in one country, which need to be used in another country, must be "authenticated" or "legalized" before they can be recognized as valid in the foreign country. This is a process in which various seals are placed on the document.
Such documents range from corporate documents like company by laws and articles of incorporation, power of attorney, patent applications and trademarks, diplomas, transcripts, letters relating to degrees, non-marital status, references and job certifications, home studies, deeds of assignments, distributorship agreements, papers for adoption purposes, affidavits, birth, death, marriage record, no criminal record certificate or police clearance etc.
The number and type of authentication certificates you will need to obtain depend on the nature of the document and whether or not the foreign country is a party to the multilateral treaty on "legalization" of documents.
China is not one of Hague Convention Participating Countries, so you can't get "apostille" certificate. You have to begin the cumbersome, time-consuming process of obtaining a series of certifications known as the "chain authentication method". What is needed is the foreign consul's authentication on the document. The foreign consulate, however, can only authenticate the seal of an office that they recognize. The Chinese Foreign Ministry handle foreign affairs in China, so if your documents are going to be used out of China then you can get your documents certified or legalized by it. A document can originate from anywhere in China and after going through several intermediate offices can get a seal from Chinese Foreign Ministry. The foreign consulate or embassy would only need to recognize one seal that of Chinese Foreign Ministry and they could legalize any document with this seal. This makes it much easier for the consul. Some embassies and most consulates located elsewhere only require Chinese Foreign Ministry seals or in some cases just a notary. It all depends upon the country the document will be used in. So you have to tell us whether you documents needed to be legalized.
Now we can help you to get your document certified and legalized by Chinese Foreign Ministry, Foreign Embassies in Beijing China, or both.
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