Important Things You Need To Know About Legal Document Translation

Legal Document

By Angelo Castelda

Language translation serves multiple purposes in society. It’s primarily used to communicate different types of information to people unfamiliar with other languages. Pieces of information as important as legal documents exemplify the many ways translators use and lend their expertise to different fields.

Translating legal documents is usually required when you conduct business with entities from other countries. As a result, businesses are beginning to place more emphasis on this, especially international companies. Besides business, translation of legal documents also happens in other sectors that involve legalities like international patent applications.

If you need to translate a legal document or plan to work as a legal translator, you should learn the important stuff about legal document translation. Read them in this blog right here.

How different legal document translation is from other translation types

Translation deals with converting written text to a target language from its source language or from one source language to another. Thus, legal document translation is the field of translation that converts legal documents to another language. In that way, it’s just like other types of translation.

However, the difference lies in the specific and unique set of terms that most legal documents have. Often, the legal text has multiple meanings behind each word choice. Hence, a legal document translator must be adept at these different meanings to properly convert documents to another language.

It’s also vital that document translation services keep the original meaning of legal documents intact, along with translating every word properly. Legal document translation’s delicateness is what makes it challenging for translators everywhere. That’s why people who do it must be knowledgeable at the very least.

Qualified translators must do it

Translators who convert legal documents to another language are typically certified ones who studied terminologies specific to law and the industry in which the business that needs translation belongs. Only qualified translators must do this job because the consequences of having even just one mistranslated word can be quite heavy.

The translated document must match the meaning of the source document because it must serve its purpose. It only takes the most minute errors in translation to void a contract or last will and testaments. That’s why legal translators must have adequate to extensive knowledge of legal document jargon to avoid getting them void.

Different examples of legal document translation

Here are some examples of legal document translation:

  • Contract localization

As mentioned previously, international companies that deal with people from different countries focus on translation to improve communication. One of the business aspects they need translators for is localizing contracts. Contracts are foundational documents of any business relationship, and they must be understood by all parties involved; hence translation is needed for localizing them.

  • Translating patents

Individuals and business entities file patents to protect their intellectual property from being stolen. Translating patents helps in filing global patent applications, especially for country-specific patents. With this legal document, the claim is the most important part and must be translated accordingly.

  • Government-enforced actions

Translations are also needed to communicate government-enforced actions to other countries better. It helps in enhancing communication between countries and streamlining diplomatic procedures.

Information that must be considered for legal document translation

Here are important things you must consider when looking for a translator for legal documents:

  • Purpose of the translation

There may be many ways of handling the translation of your legal documents to get the outcome you desire. Hence, it’s essential to know first the purpose of the translation.

  • Languages included in the scope of translation

Next, you should look at the languages that’ll be used for translating your documents. It’ll help narrow down your search for a translator.

  • Countries or markets in the scope of translation

After that, you should also know which countries will be in scope for the translation. It’s important to know because there are different laws for legal document translation in other countries, and the translator you’ll hire must be knowledgeable of them to ensure accurate translation.

  • Your desired format

Translators can use different formatting options for legal documents. First, however, you have to know which one would be proper for you because certain documents have their required formats.

  • The deadline for translation

Legal documents must be submitted on time because, if not, they usually come with penalties. Besides that, you also have to be strict and certain with the turnaround time to have enough time to proofread and make corrections if necessary.

  • Need for certification

Certain documents may need to be certified or sworn for legal document translation. You may have to look for either a sworn or certified translator to prove to do the job for you.

Wrapping up

Translation of legal documents is a serious matter. It has to be accurate, or the translation will be for naught. If you’re looking for a legal document translator, be sure to find a credible one. If you want to be one, study and train yourself well to serve your clients to the best of your abilities.

About the Author

Angelo Castelda

Angelo Castelda is a freelance writer from Asia. Besides writing, he also spends his time traveling and learning about diverse cultures and languages, which opened his heart more to learning and imparting knowledge about language translation.

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