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Cross-cultural misunderstandings always have consequences. But in the legal sector, the cost of an imprecise translation could be disastrous. From an immigration process being delayed years, to a mistrial. In this free resource, we present some real-life examples of the consequences of mistranslation and share how LSPs can ensure a fair and swift legal process regardless of linguistic differences.
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Legal translation and interpreting services are most commonly requested by immigrants. But linguists working in the legal sector don’t exclusively interpret during immigration hearings or help present documents before the USCIS.
Often, linguists are convoked by a jury to elucidate key documents that are in a foreign language or to make non-English speaking witnesses heard.
Every field poses different challenges for translators. And, while precision is always a priority, in the legal sector, it’s more important than ever.
But, despite it, sometimes the need for linguistic assistance is treated as an afterthought. So, a linguist with no previous legal experience is called. A linguist with no previous experience will be unaware of which strategies they should employ to guarantee good communication in these settings. In some cases, they may not even comply with basic confidentiality standards.
Inadequate standards and training inconsistencies aren’t as rare as you may think.
Depending on their background, an inexperienced translator or interpreter may make numberless mistakes. They may take too many creative licenses, or make word choices based on unchecked, subconscious biases. On other occasions, the parties may not even know which language services they should look for, so they look for an interpreter of the wrong dialect.
There’s also the possibility of subtle mistranslations being used by one of the parties to misrepresent the facts of the case. As Dan Harris, founder of international law firm Harris Bricken once noted,
“About 85% of the time the translation is ‘accurate,’ but about 99% of the time, it has been translated in a way that favors the side doing the translation.”
So, counting on a trustworthy, professional language services provider is essential.
We want to help you navigate your (and your client’s) need for language services from an informed perspective. In this ebook, we dive into the important role that legal interpreters and translators play in legal processes. We also take a look at what you should look for in a legal language services provider. Aside from actionable advice, we also included some real-life examples showing the repercussions of failing to achieve clear cross-cultural communication in judicial settings.