By David Thun
Kansas recently became the first U.S. state to send a paperless apostille — a certificate used to verify notarial acts and other important records — to another country.
The electronic apostille was sent to Colombia last October by the Secretary of State’s office on behalf of a Kansas resident, Dr. Fabio Rodriguez, who needed to submit verifiable documents internationally to receive pension benefits from his native country. To obtain the necessary paper apostille, Rodriguez previously had been required to travel to Topeka or to a Colombian consulate in Chicago or Washington, D.C. Using an electronic apostille eliminated the need for Rodriguez to make costly and lengthy trips to other cities, saving him thousands in travel costs.
The Kansas Secretary of State’s office had already been testing a pilot electronic apostille program that had been successfully tested in 2007. “Dr. Rodriguez is fortunate that the e-Apostille system was already set up in Kansas so that his family can save time and energy while enjoying dramatic cost savings and a level of security which far exceeds the paper-only apostille standards,” said Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
David Thun is an Associate Editor at the National Notary Association.