Business & Finance

What To Look Out For When Translating Documents


It is always a good idea to employ a professional company to deal with your translation needs, but when there are legal issues involved it becomes a critical factor. To use reliable legal documentation translation services is a necessity when even the smallest detail may mislead a client or legal professional. The legal profession has unforgiving guidelines regarding format and wording, and much of its terminology can appear archaic and overly complicated. To translate this terminology into a foreign language, and retain its original meaning, is a difficult task for many people who may only have a passing knowledge of the legal profession.

There are companies in Australia which offer a comprehensive service regarding all legal document translation in several languages.  And demand has been steadily growing for this kind of service as the global marketplace becomes ever more accessible. Knowledge of domestic and international law, accompanied with sound language interpretation skills, will continue to be a very desirable and useful skill set in today’s business place.

What to look out for in a Service Provider

  • Industry Knowledge – Does the company have any expertise in your industry? If you are involved in real estate it would be prudent to find a provider who has some link to that industry. Ask for evidence of previous involvement. If the organization has a history in a given industry there should be personnel who can discuss you requirements in detail.
  • Certification – Is the company certified and accredited by the Nation Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI). This proves a very high standard of translation skill and most professional companies will only use NAATI certified employees. NAATI accreditation is the benchmark for professional interpreters in Australia, and most practitioners have a background translating within administrative, legal, and medical fields.
  • Dedicated Team – Will you have a dedicated team or member of staff working on your project? This is of critical importance: interpretation can sometime rely on a degree of subjective reasoning. Clients and project handlers need to discuss in detail how certain documents are worded to avoid ambiguity. If there are a number of interpreters working on a project the chances of misunderstanding a client’s instructions increase. A dedicated staff member is of utmost importance if a project is to have a successful outcome.
  • Cultural Awareness – When dealing with international clients, knowing a little about their culture can go a long way in making a translation project successful. There are times when a seemingly innocuous remark can cause unnecessary offence and unintentionally jeopardize a negotiation. Having awareness of the country or culture in question can bring untold benefits to a contractual agreement or legal dispute.

Unfortunately there are service providers who offer few of these benefits. Some have only basic knowledge of legal matters and are not accredited with any formal training body. It is up to the customer to research a company and determine whether or not it has the suitable expertise to undertake the work.

Jon Mills

How to hold a great wedding reception

Previous article

The Cost of Celebrations

Next article

You may also like