Points to consider when getting your legal documents translated

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Posted on Monday, September 28th, 2015 9:19 am

Translation is a skilled profession, it is an art that requires many years of experience and specialised industrial knowledge. This is especially the case in legal translations which many considers one of the most difficult forms of translation. Legal translators not only possess sound knowledge of legal terminology, but are also well versed in the statutory requirements of the respective legal systems.

Strict deadlines are normal for legal translations, any delay in submitting documents may cause the document to be inadmissable in court. The implications of the slightest translation inaccurary or missed deadlines can cause significant financial damages.

Another point to consider is whether the translated documents requires certification by a “sworn translator”. Strictly speaking, it is the translator who is sworn, not the translation. Subject to certain requirements in terms of education and experience, a translator can take an oath before a court of law, whereupon the translations he or she produces are accepted as a full and faithful rendering of the original. The translator must ‘certify’ the translation by attaching it to the original and adding a formal declaration that he or she believes the translation to be complete and correct. This declaration is then validated by the translator’s official stamp.

An international lawyer will rely on the expertise of the translator to have documents translated into his own language. it is therefore advisable to select a reputable translation company who will be able to manage this process as well as double and triple check the legal translation to minimise any risk of inaccuracy or ambiguities.

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