This post is a continuation of my series entitled, How to Prepare Documents for an E-2 Visa in Korea.
If you are a US citizen and want to work in Korea as an English teacher, there are several documents that you will need to collect before you can secure a job offer or an E-2 visa. Last time, I showed you 5 Steps to an Apostilled FBI Criminal Background Check. Today, I will share 3 easy steps to obtaining apostilled copies of your degree(s). I even have insider tips at the end of this post for those of you near New York City.
Let’s begin, shall we?
Step 1. Make copies of your degree(s).
- You want to use copies – not your actual/original degree(s) – for this process as you will be submitting them to the Korean government and they will not be returned.
- My black and white copies were acceptable by New York State. Save your money and opt out of the fancy pants color copies.
Step 2. Get the copies of your degree(s) notarized (and verified by your county clerk if necessary).
- You will need to bring both the copies and originals of your degree(s). The originals are used to verify your degree(s) and should not be notarized.
- Also, since most states will not authenticate documents notarized in other states, be sure that the state in which you get your copies notarized will also be the state from which you will request an apostille. For example, a document notarized by an official in Kentucky cannot be apostilled by the Secretary of State in Indiana.
Step 3. Submit your notarized (and verified if necessary) copies of your degree(s) to your state’s Secretary of State.
- Find your state’s Secretary of State by doing a simple Google search using the terms “(your state name) Secretary of State apostille.” Follow the directions listed there for receiving an apostille.
- In most areas, you have 2 options.They are listed below from slowest to quickest turnaround.
Option 1: Mail your request directly to your Secretary of State. In an express mail envelope, send the notarized/verified copies of your degree(s), completed apostille application form, payment method, and a prepaid self-addressed express mail envelope to your state’s Secretary of State.
Option 2: Submit your request in person to your Secretary of State. Walk into the office with the notarized/verified copies of your degree(s), completed apostille application form, and payment method. You will likely receive the apostille while you wait or on the next business day.
- Depending on your state, prices for this service will vary from $0 – $25 per document and the turnaround time can range from 15 minutes – 10 business days.
Were you expecting something more difficult? I told you this would be pretty easy. Next time, we’ll discuss how to create a kick-ass introduction video that will get you noticed and help you get hired in a public school.
As promised, insider tips for those near New York City can be found after the jump.
Let’s assume that you’ve done Step 1 and now have the original and copies of your degree(s). You’re going to do all of the remaining steps in Manhattan because documents must be notarized and verified in the same county. Also, the New York County Clerk and New York State Department of State (NYS DOS) offices are within a short walking distance from one another.
Now, we’ll continue with Step 2.
Step 2. Bring a valid photo ID (like your passport) as well as the copies and originals of your degree(s) with you to get notarized and verified by the New York County Clerk at
60 Centre Street
New York, NY 10007
- Take the 4, 5, 6, or J trains to Brooklyn Bridge/City Hall. Exit near Duane Street. The County Clerk is located in the Supreme Court and will be the large building on your right across Foley Square.
- After you clear security, proceed to Room 141B – the B means basement (take the stairs located to the left of the elevator banks).
- Stand in the last line on the left that says “Notary”. Ask for notarization and verification of documents.
- Once documents have been taken by an employee, proceed to the “Cashier” line to make your payment ($4 per document for notarization and verification – they accept cash and debit/credit cards).
Step 3. Get an apostille by walking your documents over to the NYS DOS at
123 William St (2nd Floor)
New York, NY 10038
- The NYS DOS is a 10 minute walk from the County Clerk’s office. Enjoy the scenery as you pass the Brooklyn Bridge and City Hall.
- NYS DOS was no longer accepting cash payments (even though the website says that they do) at the NYC location when I went in on 11/30/12. If you do not have a ($10/ per document) check drawn on a US bank or a money order addressed to the NYS DOS, then stop at the nearest Duane Reade (if their money order machines are working) or the nearest Post Office located at 90 Church Street (be prepared for long lines) on your way over there.
- Bring a completed Apostille/Certificate of Authentication Request Form (DOS-1917-f-l) or fill one out at the desk before you enter the apostille queue in the room to your right.
- Submit your documents, check/money order, and completed form at the window then wait for your name to be called. My apostille was ready in less than 15 minutes. Be sure to get to the NYS DOS before they close at 3:30pm.
Follow my directions and (compared with the FBI CBC apostille process) you’ll have an apostille on the copies of your degrees in a New York minute.