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Copy/Translate Contract?
Thread poster: Manuel Rodriguez

Manuel Rodriguez  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 04:18
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Jan 9, 2006

Hello everyone,

It's bee a while since I've posted here. Right now I'm working on my profesional webpage and would like to know how experienced translators go about the contract issue.

I had no idea what to put on my contract, so I did a search and found this model contract: http://www.atanet.org//model_contract.htm

Here are some of my questions:

*Since my clients are mainly spanish-speaking, would it be okay if I translated the contract?

*If I decided to make a document of my own, what do you think would be best, 1) a simple "terms of agreement" or 2) a "must-sign contract" that needs to be sent to each client via e-mail or fax?


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Richard Creech  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:18
French to English
+ ...
Some Thoughts Jan 10, 2006

As an attorney I offer the following thoughts:

You really have two different concerns. One is a legal one, and the other is a marketing/customer relations one. As for the latter, it is probably helpful to have a contract in a language that the customer can understand. Legally, you want to make sure that the contract is in a language which will facilitate its enforcement. Some jurisdictions may have laws that require a contract to be in a certain language (or that a certified translation be obtained) in order to enforce it, and you can expect it to generally be more difficult to enforce a contract that is not written in the language of the country where you seek to enforce it. I see you are in Mexico. If most of your clients are in Spanish-speaking countries, then you might be best-served by a Spanish contract.

Hope this is helpful.


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:18
English to Spanish
+ ...
Second opinion Jan 10, 2006

I second Richard's opinion and I would also go beyond it. Since I am very familiar with translating contracts used between Mexico and the USA, the best process I can reccommend is:

1.- Translate the contract as is, and then
2.- Take it to a Mexican attorney and have him rewrite it so it fits Mexican law.

Insofar as performance items they should remain the same. However, the attorney should change/add/delete certain things with regard to formalities to adjust the contract to Mexican law if it is to be enforced in Mexico.

No, I'm not a lawyer, but I work with lawyers and this is how it is done. Plus I get to translate it not once, but twice!

Moreover, I would think the above advice would be good no matter what countries are involved. The actual agreement between the parties remains the same, but formalities can and do differ between countries.


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Manuel Rodriguez  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 04:18
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for the advice! Jan 10, 2006

Oh, so this is a little more difficult than I thought it would be.

I take it the lawyer will advice me on whether the contract should be a simple "terms of agreement" (displayed at my webpage for all to see) or a signing contract?

I also hope this doesn't mean I have to be a "traductor jurado", 'cause in that case I'd have to forego the whole contract issue and be content with a verbal agreement between myself and potential clients.

Thanks a bunch!


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