Why Professional Translation is Needed for Legal Documents

Why Professional Translation is Needed for Legal Documents

How many times has your firm faced a legal issue because of the poorly translated documents? Is it hard to translate a legal document? The complex nature of legalese varies from country to country. For this very reason, a legal translation must be accurate and reliable. Legal translation is divided into categories according to their level of expertise. Some legal translations are available for academic purposes only while some provide professional legal translation services to their clients. When we talk about legal translation we mean translation done by subject matter experts who have in-depth knowledge about the source country and target country’s legal systems. The meaning must be clarified in a precise manner and according to the desired language.

Types of Legal Translation

The source document is in the structural form of source language following its culture, legalities, and policies, and so on. When you convert a document into target language you will change the source terminologies into target terminologies to make the translation appropriately accurate.

To ensure the legal translation is appropriate companies prefer to acquire services of the certified translation. Once you use a certified translation, the document becomes a legal record.

If you are wondering what sort of legal documents we are talking about, then take a look at a few examples;

  • Financial reports
  • Patent filings
  • Medical records
  • Bank statements
  • Birth and death certificates
  • Wills and testaments
  • Marriage certificates
  • Immigration documents etc

All of these above-mentioned documents require translation from a legal translator, an expert in native and target language.


The Inaccuracy of Machine Translation


Machines are our friends, they help us to solve a problem or fix and error in the blink of an eye but these very same machines can become the cause of the problem as well. Computer programming is becoming highly sophisticated but still, you cannot rely on it for flawless results.

This is true, especially for legal translation. You can use machine translation all you want but if you rely on it solely just because you have spent a good fortune into buying expensive software, then you are in trouble. Legal translators have the on-hand experience of legal firms, laws, and regulations. The changes in the text about culture and language are not understandable by the automated software. Only a human translator can reciprocate and translate the desired content. Maybe in the future, we will rely on machine translations but for now, their accuracy level is questionable.


Variety of Complex Knowledge


A translator’s expertise comes from his experience gained over the years. He has a multitude of skills to prove it in the form of accurate legal translation. Legal translation is a bit more complex due to the use of legal terminologies and for other variety of reasons. The technical vocabulary makes the translation process tiring and time taking so even if you have the latest translation software, it will help you to confirm your doubts only. The proofreading process will be easier because of the already added glossary.


Meet the Deadlines


For business, timing means everything. Long-term plans are made based on time and task management. Therefore when a company hires a legal translation service they want them to follow their time schedules and deliver translated documents within the deadline. Translation companies known for completing translation projects on the given deadlines are the most preferable. Because the company’s staff is always overworked in various departments they expect the translators to produce accurate copies whenever they require it.

For instance, a delay in the translation of court documents could mean the document will become null and void. So the legal translator has to live up the name of their agencies for goodwill.

Tone of Translation



Every document follows a specific format. A translator cannot step aside, they have to translate the document whilst maintaining the document formation and the tone of the subject too.

Translated content must be the reflection of the original document. The tone of the translated document must sound similar to the source document. For instance, if an urgent legal notice is translated in an informal tone and not carefully enough one might think that someone is playing pranks on them.

The sensitivity of legal documents makes it necessary to focus on every word, spelling, and phrases. The reader must be able to establish the meaning behind the legal document and plan accordingly. Make sure that information is not misguided after a translation.


Constantly Changing Laws


Governing laws are ever-evolving and changing. This means it’s vital for companies to keep up with the updates as reinforcement. The hired lawyers are usually bilinguals in international companies. But this doesn’t mean that those lawyers are the professional translators. So you need to move forward with the correspondence of a highly skilled lawyer and professional legal translator. While the lawyer keeps the firm updated about the policies, the translator will convert the documents into target language whenever deemed necessary.

If you think translation is a one-person game then you are mistaken. It takes an entire team’s effort to produce a healthy copy of translation which is accurate, reliable, and delivered in fast turnaround time.

How Can You Find the Right Translator for the Legal Documents?

When it’s time to hire a translator, you need to ensure that they have a legal degree. In countries like the U.S, a legal translator must have a legal degree. You can contact the professionals who can guide you properly. Certified legal translation services are the best as they have already passed the series of tests to make sure they have the right knowledge and their expertise is useful in the legal category.

While looking for a legal translation service, you must make sure that they are

  • Certified
  • Have goodwill among its clients
  • Website have optimistic reviews
  • Native experts with high linguists skills and so on

Do your research and compare different options to choose the right translation partner as per your requirements.

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