What certified translations are done most commonly? I often hear this question when I talk to clients while providing interpreting services. It is also of interest to those preparing for or considering a career as a sworn translator.
I have therefore decided to share my experience in this matter. I hope this will help those undecided and guide the preparation of those who already know they would like to pursue this profession.
Translation into English
First, let us look at sworn translations into English. Like any other, they can be divided into two categories: oral and written.
It might seem that interpreting is always done both ways, but in the case of interpreting at a notarial office, for example, interpreting is almost exclusively done one way. So, let us start with translations.
Translations into English
Translations into English actually concern only matters that Poles, or Polish companies, want to handle abroad. For individuals, I most often translate birth certificates, marriage certificates, translations of certificates, notarial deeds, and court judgments.
They are thus documents requiring knowledge of administration and law. In order to do sworn translations of these documents, you also need quite extensive knowledge of the law and institutions in the country to which the translation is addressed. I do not always know where a document is addressed to, so I often have to use the most general forms and translator’s footnotes to avoid misleading the recipient of the translation.
Regardless of the documents being translated, I almost always find in them personal data and names of localities. I write more extensively about how to translate first and last names and how to translate foreign place names in subsequent articles.
Companies, in turn, commission me to provide sworn translations into English of financial statements, contracts, court documents, or various certificates and attestations. There are actually no limits to the knowledge one should possess in order not to be surprised by any text. Knowledge of law, finance, or economics in general is the basis, without which nothing can be done. To this must be addedtechnical terminology and sometimes knowledge of entire production processes.
I once interpreted at a court case at a very short notice, where a manufacturer of robots, e.g., for military applications, argued with the ordering party. It was a beautiful mix of vocabulary including public procurement law and automation, sprinkled with additional military terminology.
As I walked out of the courtroom, I realised that had it not been for my economic, technical, and information technology background, I would have fallen flat there.
Certified Interpreting into English
As I have already mentioned, when it comes to certified interpreting into English, notarial deeds reign supreme. Chief among these services are:
- sworn translations of real estate sales contracts,
- representations on submission to enforcement attached to contracts of leases and powers of attorney.
It is worth mentioning here that during the provision of these services there are almost always standard questions from the clients. Any doubts are of course clarified by the notary, but it is useful to know certain things so that more difficult issues can be explained in simpler language. In addition, clients often ask: Is this standard procedure? Do you often translate such documents?
This is particularly true of representations on submission to enforcement. In such situation, I assure that I translate such a document on average once a week and that the landlord can only use it if the tenant does not vacate the premises after the expiry of the contract. That usually takes care of the matter. To delve deeper into the topic I invite you to read the following article: ”Interpreting rate per hour“, where I give a hint:
- Which legal transactions requirethe presence of an interpreter?
- What is the approximate duration of a given transaction and what is its price?
- Why does the cost of an interpreterdepend on the interpreter’s availability?
My price list: Sworn Translator Price List – at this link. The last time I went to do interpreting I was here.
Interpreting at the Registry Office
A separate category are interpreting services at the Registry Office. Here, the most common transaction is filing the paperwork for a wedding, the wedding itself and registering a child. They are usually pleasant transactions that do not last more than an hour. There is a certain amount of stress associated with weddings because it is, after all, a public event.
Sometimes Clients are surprised by the language the interpreter uses during a wedding at the Registry Office. These are formal phrases that sometimes sound pompous in the ears of foreigners. It is worth warning Clients that these are the words used by the Head of the Registry Office, so the sworn translation made by me must be accurate.
Sworn Translations from English
When I think about what kind of translations from English I do most often, I have to say that they are mainly translations of texts. I do not mention here activities performed on behalf of state bodies, as this would actually require a separate article. Thus, apart from interpreting for courts and the Police, sworn interpretations into Polish are very rare.
When it comes to the topics of translation into English, on the other hand, they do not differ much from those performed into Polish. Translation of car documents from the UK or the US are an exception here. Such translations from English are quite popular, but so far, I have translated a Polish registration certificate into English maybe twice.
Sworn Translations – English
I realise that a lot more can be said about the topic. Sworn translations, just like the English language, or rather the practice of translating within this language, still hide many interesting facts which I will successively describe on this blog.
Translators in the UK and Australia
Finally, let me just add that the institution of a sworn translator in Poland is strictly regulated. In Poland we pass a state exam, we take an oath before the Minister of Justice, so documentstranslated in Poland are recognised almost all over the world.
It is completely different in the UK or Australia. Therefore, please note that only documents translated by a sworn translator sworn in this country are accepted in Poland. To find out why I invite you to read the articles: Translator in UK and Translator in Australii..
Maciej Wróblewski – sworn translator of English – MIW Marszałkowska