Appointment-System of the German Foreign Office — Chicago

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Certification of Signature and Photocopies incl. name declarations and birth registrations


Certification of Signature and notarized Photocopies

Further information about signature certifications (including an explanation how it differs from a full notarization) are available on or webpage here. For a full notarization (e.g. application for a certificate of inheritance; acknowledgement of paternity for a child born outside of a marriage; formal affidavits) please schedule an appointment through our contact form; for a signature certification or certification of photocopies please continue here. For the renouncement of an inheritance a signature certification is sufficient. Driver's license certifications can be obtained by the category "Other Consular Certifications".

The following service will be available with the present appointment

1. you need to have your signature certified for the use in Germany. Basic examples are:

  • name declaration and birth registration
  • approval of release (e.g. mortgage)
  • power of attorney or declaration of consent for real estate contracts
  • police certificate of good conduct
  • opening of blocked account
  • renouncement of inheritance

2. you need one or more notarized copies of documents for the use in Germany


  • The German Consulate General is not allowed to certify signatures or perform identity verifications to open a new account (except blocked accounts for students), for loan applications or similar cases. Read more

Honorary Consuls

Certification of signatures and photocopies can also be made by an Honorary Consul. If you prefer to visit one of the Honorary Consul in our district please contact them directly. Contact information for Honorary Consuls can be found here.

US Notary Public

Signature certifications will in some cases also be recognized under German law if done by a US notary public. Please make sure in advance that the German authority, to which the document shall be presented, does accept this procedure. Authorities in Germany may request an "apostille" in addition to the signature certification done by a US notary public.

If copies are notarized by a US notary public, please make sure that the notary public certifies on the copy that it is a true copy of the original (i.e. for example "This is a true copy of the original").

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