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Only ONE agency for sworn translators in Hungary?
Thread poster: Helena Diaz del Real

Helena Diaz del Real  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:27
Member (2005)
German to Spanish
+ ...
Jan 17, 2008

Hello dear hungarian translators!
First of all, my apologizes for writting in english, but I speak no hungarian at all. And the question I want to put only concerns only Magyarorszag and the translators from/to these language. Thank you for your understanding!

So, and my question is:
Is there in whole Hungary ONE single translation agency (wiht some offices all around the country) allowed/able to make sworn translations?

The matter is as follows:
A mexican friend of mine is going to marry an hungarian girl. The wedding is going to take place in Pécs. Now, as everywhere in the world, he must send a sworn translation of his birth certificate. As they asked at the civil court, the people there told my friend and his girlfriend, that there is only one agency able/allowed to sworn it.

Is this right? And if not, why do you think they were told so?

I thank you very much for your answers and hope Csaba takes pity on me and allowes this question to stay! ;o)))

Best wishes,
Helena


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Attila Piróth  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 09:27
Member
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Yes Jan 17, 2008

Yes, indeed. Strange as it might seem, OFFI still has this highly privileged status.
Attila


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Levente Bodrossy Dr.  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:27
English to Hungarian
+ ...
. Jan 17, 2008

... and usually provides the quality such a monopoly situation inevitably results in.

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Helena Diaz del Real  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:27
Member (2005)
German to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you very much Attila and Levente! Jan 17, 2008

Hi Levene and Attila!
Thank you very much indeed for your quick and very useful answers!
As this friend of mine told me that I just could not believe it and told him I am going to verify it.
Well now I will tell him...

Take care and hope to meet you soon again (at least Attila I met at the Conference!) ;o))

Best wishes,
Helena


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Helena Diaz del Real  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:27
Member (2005)
German to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Something else, please... Jan 17, 2008

Hi again!

I just thought:

Could there be a sworn translator spanish into hungarian living in i.e. Mexico, allowed to do it? Or are they exclusively living in Hungary??

Otherwise I connot figue out how does it work...!

Thank you again,
Helena


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Orsolya Mance  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:27
Member (2004)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Only in Hungary Jan 17, 2008

I can confirm this too - I have no idea how they manage to keep this monopoly (well I do), but the way they see it is if you want to get married in Hungary you have to do it their way. My (British) husband and I got married in Budapest and it was exactly the same, there is no way of getting around them I'm afraid.

What the authorities want is not really a "sworn translation", but a translation produced and/or certified by (the stamp of the) OFFI.

You can get them to certify a translation made by someone else, but as it has to meet all their formal requirements, the proofreading costs 70% (??????) of what the translation would cost, plus the certification fee, so I don't think it's worth it.

And best of all: they haven't even managed to translate their own site into English...


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xxxzsuzsa369
Local time: 08:27
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Bureaucracy Jan 17, 2008

Hi Helena,

I just want to add that your Mexican friend and his Hungarian fiancée had better brace themselves for some pretty tough bureaucracy if they want to get married in Hungary. When I was in the same situation about 5-6 years ago, I got so frustrated with the whole system that in the end we decided to get married in the UK instead, which was so much easier. Maybe there have been some positive changes since, but I remember being frustrated out of my mind with the senselessness of the bureaucratic system.

Anyway, I hope it all goes smoothly for your friends.

Zsuzsa


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Levente Bodrossy Dr.  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:27
English to Hungarian
+ ...
. Jan 17, 2008

Consider this - a sworn Spanish-Hungarian translator in Spain - that is, within the EU - is not accepted in Hungary (that is, within the EU). I would risk a bet that this is a unique case...

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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:27
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
OFFI is the only place, they are slow and expensive Jan 18, 2008

I think there is a lot of truth in what Zsuzsa is saying, unless things changed for the better in the past 6 years. We got married in the US, and later I registered the marriage in Hungary. I did not see any need for it, but without the marriage registered in Hungary I would not have been able to register my son's birth either. That was not a simple thing in terms of bureaucracy, and the only thing that prevented me from getting more white hairs during the process was that I read everything about it and I had all documents with me when I went to the registrar's office, and also that my mother happened to know a few people at that office, and they were probably more helpful than they would have been to a totally unknown person.

The way it works in practice is that the foreign national has to bring his original documents to OFFI, they make a certified copy of it, then they do the certified translation of it, which they physically attach the certified copy to the translation (using a wax seal). This package is what needs to be submitted to the registrar's office. One package for every foreign document. (I am not sure what is necessary for a new marriage, probably birth certificates, but they may ask for some sort of document from Mexico that would state that the guy has no other valid marriage there.)
Getting the certified translation from OFFI can take weeks - I think they had an "expedited" process for even heftier fees, but still it was not very fast, as far as I remember.

If your Mexican friend is not residing in Hungary, he can perhaps send the documents to Hungary, although I would be very careful, and use an international document courier because those would have to be the originals and he would not want to lose them in the mail.


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Zsanett Rozendaal-Pandur  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 09:27
Dutch to Hungarian
+ ...
My experience Jan 18, 2008

Yes, it's a nightmare, unfortunately. But perhaps it's gotten better in the past few years?

We registered our marriage in 2005. Incidentally, I'm from Pécs and had to register there, so I went to the OFFI office (OFFIce, if you like) in Pécs.

I had made my own translation and had it certified by them. They didn't complain about the layout, although they did change it.

What I did was send them the scans of the source documents by email, along with my own translation, a week before I went to Pécs in person (6 days, to be exact). They had a "2 days or longer" category, which was the normal pricing, anything shorter than that was seen as urgent. I made an appointment with them by email beforehand, went in on the given date, handed in the originals and I could collect the certified package within an hour or two. This worked well for us, because I didn't have to let go of the originals. And as said, it didn't take that long. But this only works if somebody from the family would be going to Pécs anyway. You can reach the Pécs OFFIce at +36 72 513290 or at offipecs at mail.datanet.hu.

If going along in person is not an option at all, I was wondering if the Hungarian embassy in Mexico could help your friend in some way? Perhaps they could make a certified copy of the documents (if your friend lives close enough to the embassy to bring them along), to eliminate the risk of losing them in the mail, as Katalin mentioned.


[Edited at 2008-01-18 16:23]


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Helena Diaz del Real  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:27
Member (2005)
German to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I couldn't get any better answers as yours!!! Jan 18, 2008

Hello Colleagues!
In fact I could not get any better aswer to my question as those you all provided me with.
I thank you very much for your help, as I could not really believe it!!!
I hope I once can be so helpful to you as you were for me now!!!
Thank you very much and "bizonlatashra" (Yes I know it is full of mistakes, but I wanted not to show it on the web, as this is one of the two hungarian words I knew, even long before I went to Hungary for the very first time (roughly 1984). (The second one was kezenom")

So thank you very, very much indeed and with eighteen days delate, I wish you a very happy, healthy and joyful 2008!!!

Yours,
Helena


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juvera  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:27
English to Hungarian
+ ...
If you didn't get married in Hungary.... Jan 22, 2008

Katalin Horvath McClure wrote:

We got married in the US, and later I registered the marriage in Hungary. I did not see any need for it, but without the marriage registered in Hungary I would not have been able to register my son's birth either. That was not a simple thing in terms of bureaucracy, and the only thing that prevented me from getting more white hairs during the process was that I read everything about it and I had all documents with me when I went to the registrar's office...
The way it works in practice is that the foreign national has to bring his original documents to OFFI, they make a certified copy of it, then they do the certified translation of it, which they physically attach the certified copy to the translation (using a wax seal). This package is what needs to be submitted to the registrar's office. One package for every foreign document.....


AFAIK, you can go to the Hungarian Embassy in the country the marriage took place, with original documents and the certified translation of the marriage certificate, and have it registered. At least, I believe it is done in the UK, because I have been asked to translate British marriage certificates for that purpose.


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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:27
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
The embassies and consulates, uhum... Jan 22, 2008

I would not say that route is easier. Particularly, if the Embassy is on the other side of the continent (we lived in Arizona, the Embassy is in Washington DC). A good friend of mine tried to do something simpler (renew her passport) and that turned into a complete nightmare due to the incompetency and carelessness of the people both at the Consulate and at the Embassy that time. So I would not wanted to try this route with a marriage/birth, which is more complicated and requires more documents. Plus I had other things to take care of while in Hungary anyway.

[Módosítva: 2008-01-23 00:20]


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juvera  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:27
English to Hungarian
+ ...
That was just one solution... Jan 22, 2008

..to the thorny problem of dealing with Hungarian bureaucracy. It seems to work here, although they are never easy to deal with.
BTW surely, there are some other places with a Consulate, nearer than NY?


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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:27
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
US Consulates Jan 23, 2008

juvera wrote:

..to the thorny problem of dealing with Hungarian bureaucracy. It seems to work here, although they are never easy to deal with.
BTW surely, there are some other places with a Consulate, nearer than NY?


I made a mistake in my message before, it is a Consulate in NY, the Embassy is in Washington DC. There are two other consulates, one in Chicago and one is Los Angeles.
So, I wouldn't say that they are all over the place. And again, it doesn't seem to make the process easier or the paperwork less to do it through these places. The only thing is that they accept translations of documents submitted by the requester, and they certify it (for $22.00 per document, I think).
Anyway, this is not what the original question was about.


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