We have already discussed in this translation blog the importance of interpretation services, the difference with translation services and the abilities, qualification, and training that an interpreter needs to have to accomplish their job. The idea of this post is to point out the importance of medical and legal interpretation services and the seriousness of an inaccurate rendering.
Medical Interpreters and Legal interpreters are the facilitators that bridge the language gap during a Medical Interpretation and Judicial Interpretation session. Due to the nature of the matters involved, medical and legal interpreters have a responsibility and ethical duty to complete the task successfully. One deals with the health and well being of a person and the other might even determine the freedom of an individual or maybe the loss of assets. Needless is to say there are many moral elements involved in the selection of the appropriate trained individual for the duty and that there are many components to consider, including budget and planning, to facilitate the interpretation service.
In addition to the ethical and training issues regarding interpretation, there are important rules to execute the job appropriately. Nonetheless during the activity the primary goal of an interpreter should be delivering an accurate and complete interpretation. With that in mind the following conditions should be met:
- Setting the stage-set clear expectations of their role. Interpreting activity is mainly about transmit information.
- Managing the flow of communication- so that important information is not lost or miscommunicated.
- Managing the triadic relationship – the interpreter’s role is not to take sides or take control over the message, rather to achieve the communication process.
- Assisting in closure activities – prepare communication for follow ups and aid the connection with other services required particularly in the medical setting.
All of these conditions do not need to be covered in every interpretation setting but are vital in Medical and Legal interpretations.
Recently we stumbled upon 2 articles that show how important medical and legal interpretation is. One article is a success story about how medical interpretation has helped a local hospital in Rochester, New York bridge the language barrier and shorten hospital stays and readmission rates.
The other article we found is a story about Nevada’s court system. There, insufficient resources to aid the Spanish speaking defendants waiting for trials and the controversy surrounding budget cuts, which resulted in a bigger shortage of legal interpreters, created conflicts that arise both moral and justice issues.
Two main reasons have triggered the need for legal translation:
- World Immigration
- International Commerce (globalization)
And, contrary to marketing translation, there is no freedom when translating legal documents. The translation has to be a verbatim of the original document since one change will render the translation invalid or could be the reason of a lawsuit.
But there are a couple of similarities between marketing and legal translation. One is that translators specialize in legal translation. Legal terminology is very specific, almost unnatural compared to every day vocabulary. It uses, for example, many Latin words. That is why translators train to do this job and go to workshops to keep up with the subject.
And just as with localization for marketing material, there is localization in legal. The legal system in England and in the United States use different words to name the same things, for example:
Lawyer is a general word for someone who has professional training in legal work or who is an expert in the law. In American English, the word attorney is often used instead, especially in legal or official language and especially to refer to a lawyer who represents people in court.
In British English, there is a difference between a solicitor, who gives legal advice and prepares legal documents, and a barrister, who represents people in court.
Not to mention that different countries have different legal systems, which carry many other variations.
Hiring a professional translator cannot be more important than in legal translation. It can only be compared to medical translations. Make sure that your translator is aware of and able to perform perfectly your legal needs to avoid difficulties in your legal process.
Q. Are you planning on applying to a university, which the official language is different from yours?
Good for you in applying to a college!; the language barrier can be managed. By now, you should probably know that you will need your diploma(s), grades and other official documents translated. But, selecting the best translation agency to do the job is key to an easy and successful application process. Be aware of these important issues:
1. Correct word usage
Your translator could interpret your bachelor’s degree as a high school diploma due to a bad localization process. For example, the translation for bachelor’s degree in some Spanish-speaking countries is bachillerato, which means high school in others. That would be a major mistranslation and will definitely not get you into the right college level.
The translation of official documents for education has to be accurate, and educational institutions often require a certified translation. That means that the translation of your diploma, the translation of your grades or, the translation of the syllabus need to be certified by the translation agency that did the job and that they assume responsibility. The certification is an affidavit that goes with the translation, attesting accuracy and level of competence.
Another important element of concern is the cost of the translation. But remember: most of the time, there is a close relation between price and quality. You should consider spending a little bit more, resulting in an excellent translation.
4. Turnaround time
College application deadlines do not wait. You should select a translation agency that works around your deadlines and also offers faster mail delivery services.
Education is one of the most important aspects in a person’s life. Don’t let a bad translation jeopardize your future. Be smart and secure the rest of your life by hiring the services of professional translators from a qualified translation agency.