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Job offer involving proof-reading of a pre-translated text
Thread poster: Diana Kozenitzky Andrés

Diana Kozenitzky Andrés  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 22:31
English to Spanish
+ ...
Feb 22, 2007

Hello:
I'm an English / Spanish translator that have just been asked to do the proof reading of a contract. The client says it is a good translation but needs me to seal and sign it, for I'm a a registered translator. That is, someone, not registered, had done the translation for him, and now he wants me to "give it a look" and to seal it.
He says he's been in the States and knows the translation is ok, that he has payed for a translation to be done, and do not want to pay for another. It's like proof-reading I guess. But I was told not to accept this kind of job offerings, because generally one has to do the translation.


Can you help me? What can I do?
How much should I charge a proof reading?


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Bilore  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 03:31
English to French
+ ...
Not surprised... Feb 22, 2007

I've just been asked by a registered spanish-french translator to translate a document so she would then add her seal on it.

She's registered in France but isn't able to translate into French without making mistakes so she always outsources.

Worse, she said she would charge her client 0.05 (VAT included) meaning I had to charge less than that.

This just made me laugh...

Your case is a bit different. Maybe your client couldn't find a registered translator or didn't know the document had to be certified....

Maybe you should charge your usual proofreading rate + a fee to certify the document.

Christine


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Jutta Scherer  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:31
English to German
+ ...
Careful! Feb 22, 2007

Hi,

Frankly, I agree with what people have told you.
Above all, never rely on a client's statement regarding the quality of a translation! The client is not the expert - you are. (If you need a health certificate, would the doctor rely on your statements, or rather examine your health him/herself?)

So if you really want/need this job, this is what I think you should do: Tell the client (in friendly terms) that
- as a certified translator, you can only "seal" documents if you are 100% sure about their quality - otherwise you will run severe professional risks and may even be liable for damages
- experience teaches that in many cases, proofing/editing a translation is almost as much work as doing it from the start. (You may want to remind him/her how long it takes to just read a newspaper article... and you will need to read both texts, original and translation, and probably research some terms.)

Consequently, if he/she wants a definite certification, I think you should charge at least (!!) half of what you would charge for the translation itself, plus your usual certification fee. Never check a translation for that fee alone (except if you know the translator and his/her quality VERY well).

Just my 5 cents...

Good luck with this one
Jutta


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Diana Kozenitzky Andrés  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 22:31
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I did just that!!! Feb 22, 2007

Thank you very much Jutta!
I did just that, your piece of advice is just perfect!!!

Sorry I can't go on with this reply, my baby needs me!!!

Thank you again,
Diana. (may 8th)


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Diana Kozenitzky Andrés  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 22:31
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Christine!!! Feb 22, 2007

Thank you very much for your help!!

Browsing through the forums one understands you all are a team of professional translators!

Thank you!

Diana. (may 8th)


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Lucinda  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:31
Member (2002)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Be very careful! Feb 22, 2007

First, only you can be the judge of the quality of the translation. And you should be the judge because when you certify it, YOUR name is on the document as the person responsible.

I would ask my regular proofing fee per hour and tell the client that you need to see the document before deciding whether this will be a proofreading job or whether you need to retranslate the document or parts of it.

That said, I usually try to avoid jobs like this. The experience is often negative and I only do it for very good clients with whom I have had a long-standing business relationship.

Good luck!
Lucinda


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Diana Kozenitzky Andrés  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 22:31
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Lucinda!! Feb 22, 2007

I sent an e-mail, explaining almost everything (shortly) that you and the other translators had adviced me.

And I feel very comfortable with this point of view.
I want to take the job for I need it now and It gives me some more experience on the contracts field. But yes, I understand why generally these kind of jobs are not welcome!!

Now I'll have to wait for the reply. Hopefully he'll make a deal!

Thanks again,
Diana (may 8th).


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