Recently, House Bill 23-1004 was published, mandating insurers to translate policies in Colorado, which is part of a range of language-based consumer protection bills that supports limited English-proficient people living in the United States.
The Bill, titled Language Access in Insurance Documents, was introduced to the Colorado House of Representatives on January 9 2023 by representative Elizabeth Velasco. Velasco’s experience in professional translation and her position as the owner of a small language service provider ensures that she is the right person to present this opportunity that will “broaden the umbrella” of language access in the legal and educational system.
What the Bill from the Federal Government Requiring Insurers to Translate Policies Means
The first section of the Bill revolves around the quality of translated policy documents. Insurers will henceforth have to certify that their policies were translated by professional, certified translators. These documents may only be certified by translators accredited by the American Translators Association (ATA).
If the Bill is passed, it’ll take effect on January 1, 2024.
But since insurance providers will now have to translate their policies into as many languages as possible, it might be challenging to stick to best practices considering that there are a plethora of languages used across the U.S.
What, then, are the best practices for translating insurance policies? Here’s a short guide!
The Basics Required for Insurers to Translate Policies for Health and Human Services
Work with Professional Language Service Providers
Compiling accurate translations for insurance policies can be a very time-consuming process since not all terms and conditions can be directly translated. It requires a deep knowledge of the legal terminology to accurately translate the message within policy documents. These documents must be translated 100% accurately to stay compliant with state and federal laws.
Working with a professional translation partner is the only way to ensure accuracy. These professionals have a comprehensive understanding of LEP consumers. If insurers translate their policy documents in advance, it might reduce waiting periods between claims acceptance and filing to ensure that no deadlines are missed.
Insurers must also have their website translated into as many languages as possible. Another aspect that must be covered is the online claims submission system. Translating these platforms will help reduce the expenses of providing assistance to LEP clients.
Avoid Misrepresentations with Translation Services
Insurers that want to avoid lawsuits and potential loss of life must work with translation services. Inaccurate translations can easily create problems and language barriers that can lead to massive financial damage.
The array of complicated terminology can be difficult for average people to understand. Misrepresentation is a major problem here, and it’s something that happens when insurers don’t cover expenses within their policy due to exclusions or denied coverage.
Choosing a Translation Services Partner as a Health Insurance Company
Choosing the right partner for translating your insurance policies can be a daunting task. With an abundance of providers out there, it’s essential to research your options before picking one to ensure that your language partner covers your needs within your budget. They must also help ensure you comply with language access laws as an insurance agent.
Insurance firms need to partner with translation service providers that are experienced in the translation of policy documents and contracts. They must also have a proven track record in legal translation and language assistance.
Your partner of choice must also be accredited to ensure high quality and accuracy of their work. Your partner must also have a localized understanding of state or regional regulations where your services are offered.
Here at Day Translations, we specialize in legal and medical translation, which means that our teams of professional translators are perfectly suited to assist you with the translation of your policy documents. To find out more about our wide range of language services, get in touch with us today!
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