Saturday, January 3, 2009

Authenticating and Translating Dossier

The only item we don't have yet for our Mexico Dossier is our application to the DIF of the state in Mexico where we intend to complete the adoption. Our agency is getting it for us, and we should have it in the near future. We aren't sure if we have to get the application notarized or not.
So in the meantime we are starting to get the rest of our dossier documents authenticated. Since Mexico and the US are both Hague Convention countries, all of the documents submitted to Mexico must be authenticated with an Apostille in order to be recognized by the Mexican government. An apostille is generally issued by the Secretary of State's office of the state where the document originated in the case of documents like birth certificates. If the document is notarized it gets apostilled in the state where the Notary Public has a commission. That meant that we had to send some of our documents to other states to get them apostilled. We are finding that the cost varies considerably for this. Some states don't charge anything, others charge a dollar per document, while Florida charges $10 per document! We have over 15 dossier documents that originated in Florida, so those fees are starting to add up quickly!

Since P was born in Mexico, his birth certificate does not need to have an apostille for the dossier, since it originated in Mexico. We were able to avoid needing to use his birth certificate in our paperwork that was submitted to the US Government by sending them his US Naturalization Certificate instead of his birth certificate, as that was an option. That also helped us avoid having to have anything translated for the US Government.

Speaking of translations, the reason we are starting to get our dossier authenticated right now is so that we can send it to a certified translator in Mexico City to get everything translated into Spanish. We figure that with the time it will take to get our dossier completed, authenticated, sent to our agency for a final review and then sent to Mexico and translated, it will coincide relatively closely to when we anticipate receiving our CIS approval. Then there will hopefully be no delays in submitting our paperwork to the Mexican authorities to start our approval process there.

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