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Thread poster: MaryAnn Diorio, PhD, MFA

MaryAnn Diorio, PhD, MFA
Local time: 14:25
French to English
+ ...
Dec 5, 2007

Hello, Everyone,

Do any of you charge a flat rate for projects such as birth certificates and university transcripts? If so, how much do you charge for translating a birth certificate or a transcript? I understand that this price will vary depending on the length and complexity of the document.
I am looking for a guideline.

Thank you very much for your help.


MaryAnn Diorio, Ph.D.
Freelance Translator


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:25
English to German
+ ...
$ 30 to $ 40 minimum Dec 5, 2007

USD 30 minimum for birth certificates, more for university transcripts as they are less standardized and vary from university to university.

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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 13:25
Partial member
Spanish
+ ...
1 page = 1 hour Dec 5, 2007

Hello MaryAnn,

I usually charge 1 hour per page. But of course this varies a lot depending on the document. I never quote certificates without seeing them first. If it's something very simple or for an old client, the price can go down. If it has a lot of tables and seals that need to be formatted into the file, I charge by the hour and let the client know beforehand.


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Lucinda  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:25
Member (2002)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Never make a commitment without seeing the doc first Dec 5, 2007

I agree with Claudia. Always ask to see the document first. Some of the older degrees and transcripts of some countries are still handwritten - a type of caligraphy writing. Some are hard to read.

In that case I suggest that I have the clock running - believe me some take more than an hour to do only one page.

If they are typewritten and more or less standard, my flat rate is EUR 25. And that really is for good clients who want to have them done. I try as much as possible to avoid them, I am sorry.

Good luck!
Lucinda


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MaryAnn Diorio, PhD, MFA
Local time: 14:25
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Flat Rates Dec 5, 2007

Thanks to all of you so far for your generous help. You are a great group of people!


Warm regards,

MaryAnn


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Kevin Fulton
United States
Local time: 14:25
German to English
Charge extra for personal documents Dec 5, 2007

Due to logistical issues and contrary customers, I rarely do personal personal documents any more unless they have been provided by an agency or an attorney.

I once had a client who was upset that the stamp of the school she had attended decades ago indicated that it was a school for the learning disabled. Since she wanted the translation certified, there was no way I was going to put a generic ["school stamp"] in the translation.

Various state agencies have different requirements regarding certification which only adds to the hassle. ("Oh, I forgot to tell you, this isn't for [fill in the name of your state]; the official at the [fill in name of bureaucracy] said the document must be [notarized, on office stationery, signed in blue ink, stapled to a copy on the upper left corner ...]).

It's possible to make a good living translating personal documents if they're all submitted to the same state/federal agency (as in the case of immigration papers/work permits), but my own experience is that as an occasional job, it's not worth the time and effort.


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:25
English to German
+ ...
Standard vs. specialty Dec 5, 2007

Claudia Alvis wrote:

I usually charge 1 hour per page.


Unfortunately nobody will ever think of paying you a full hour for a birth certificate that that might consist of 50 words. Provided you are charging decent hourly rates.

I noticed that a lot of people are wasting a lot of time on copying the original layout of those documents. This is not necessary. You don't reformat stamps. Being an immigrant myself, my papers were translated by the consul, not by any translation agency. That's how I learned the standard which was confirmed by the NYU (translator certificate).


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