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Professional indemnity insurance
Thread poster: Anaviva
Anaviva  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:03
Spanish to English
+ ...
Feb 13, 2002

Could anyone recommend a good supplier of indemnity insurance in Spain/UK?



I\'d be grateful for any feedback.





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Mats Wiman  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 04:03
Member (2000)
German to Swedish
+ ...

MODERATOR
A hopeless subject! Feb 13, 2002

My advice:



Do not sign any contract making you accountable for the ensuing effects of your translation.

It is intrinsicly clear IMHO that the only one who can take full responsibility for a text - also a translated one - is the one who distributes the text in question: The customer - NOT THE AGENCY AND NOT THE TRANSLATOR.

Consequently there is nothing to insure on your part.

Indemnity insurance (adhering to the above logic) is very rare indeed and this type of insurance scheme very often are discontinued after a few years.



A translator can only translate as well as s/he can. Period.



The only punishment a buyer of a translation can give a translator is not to pay for (part of) the translation. Period.



Best regards



Mats J C Wiman

Übersetzer/translator deu/eng/fra/esl>sve

http://www.MatsWiman.com & http://www.ProZ.com/translator/1749

German>Swedish Moderator

Träsk 729

S-872 97 Skog

Schweden/Sweden/Suède/Suecia

+46-612-54112

Fax-54182. Via eMail: -54181

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-02-13 19:22 ]

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-02-13 19:24 ]

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-02-13 19:30 ]


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Anaviva  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:03
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
A very interesting opinion. Feb 14, 2002

Thank you for your reply.



Quote:


On 2002-02-13 19:20, MatsWiman wrote:

My advice:



Do not sign any contract making you accountable for the ensuing effects of your translation.

It is intrinsicly clear IMHO that the only one who can take full responsibility for a text - also a translated one - is the one who distributes the text in question: The customer - NOT THE AGENCY AND NOT THE TRANSLATOR.

Consequently there is nothing to insure on your part.

Indemnity insurance (adhering to the above logic) is very rare indeed and this type of insurance scheme very often are discontinued after a few years.



A translator can only translate as well as s/he can. Period.



The only punishment a buyer of a translation can give a translator is not to pay for (part of) the translation. Period.



Best regards



Mats J C Wiman

Übersetzer/translator deu/eng/fra/esl>sve

http://www.MatsWiman.com & http://www.ProZ.com/translator/1749

German>Swedish Moderator

Träsk 729

S-872 97 Skog

Schweden/Sweden/Suède/Suecia

+46-612-54112

Fax-54182. Via eMail: -54181

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-02-13 19:22 ]

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-02-13 19:24 ]

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-02-13 19:30 ]



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Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 05:03
Turkish to English
+ ...
Insurance Feb 14, 2002

My own indemnity insurance is with:

Shephards, 29 Bromley Road, Bromley, BR1 1DH, United Kingdom

tel: +44 20 84609999

www.shephardherriot.co.uk

I have never had occassion to fall back on this policy, so I can\'t really comment as to how useful it is. Setting up a policy with them is certainly a fairly simple procedure. Their policy does not cover liabilities in North America, however.

I hope this information is of some assistance.


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Tao Weber
German to English
+ ...
What if somebody gets hurt though? Feb 14, 2002

I find Mats\' comment interesting. I have to admit that it makes sense, this brings up the question though that if the intellectual property which a translation is belongs to you, no matter what all the NDA\'s say, do you automatically assume liability for any possible outcome? I am located in the U.S. and I guarantee you that if you translate a manual for example and someone gets hurt you\'ll definitely be questioned, and sued if there was an error in a translation.

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Roddy Tannahill  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:03
French to English
+ ...
Insurance is insurance! Feb 14, 2002

I agree in principle with Mats\' comments, but in my situation, I didn\'t sign any contracts with any agencies - it was all done very \'loosely\', so I didn\'t really know what the legal situation was. And after all, insurance is there to help you if things go wrong. IMHO, you can never be over-insured. I took out a professional indemnity policy with a company called Tolson Messenger in London, who came recommended to me. For £100K of cover based on German law, my premium is GBP 260 per year. Now, given that I can make double that on a good week, I rather think I\'d sooner pay the money now than have lawyers breathing down my neck sometime in the future. That\'s just my opinion. Maybe it\'s because I\'m just unlucky, but I find that working without insurance is just asking for trouble.

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jccantrell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:03
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
No insurance yet, but I drive too fast, too! Feb 14, 2002

While Mats\' comments may actually apply in Sweden, in the USA the situation is quite different. In this country, anybody can (and usually does!) sue anybody else for virtually any perceived injury.



If a passerby trips and falls on the public sidewalk because of a crack in the concrete you can be almost certain that the homeowner (or business) fronting the sidewalk will be sued, in addition to the city agency charged with maintaining the sidewalk.



That being said, a translator CAN be sued for an incorrect translation in the USA. Mats is correct when he says you can only translate as well as you can. But an error that causes injury will most certainly result in a suit and everyone involved will be party to that suit (at least in the USA).



The ATA here worked out a deal with an insurance company (I forget which one) to offer \'errors and omissions\' coverage for translators. I personally do not have it, but I also do not do manuals for X-ray equipment. However, if I were offered a job that I felt might lead to possible suits, I would seriously consider having it.



As an old advertising slogan about insurance went: \"It is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.\"



In my case, my particular cost/benefit analysis stated that I do not need it (yet).



Just another perspective.


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Brenda Wong, M.A. (Translation & Interpretation)  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:03
English to Chinese
+ ...
insurance v no insurance Feb 14, 2002

I always have mixed feeling about whether a translator/interpreter should purchase indemnity insurance. I completely agree with jccantrell about lawsuits in the States. Lots of people, in my opinion, are sue happy and looking and waiting for \"the moment\" - when they can sue someone for money (and probably get rich). So, insurance can indeed bring a peace of mind. However, I remember reading an article, written by a lawyer and translator, which says that indemnity insurance only attracts other people to go after you because they know if you lose, your insurance company would have to pay for the damages. This is in fact very true. I work with a lot of lawyers and know a few myself. One of the criteria they have as to whether to accept a case is if they can recover money. That is, I think, one of the reasons, why there are so many personal injury lawsuits in the States. Everyone is required to have auto insurance (if you drive) or homeowners insurance (if you have a home). If something happens, it doesn\'t matter who\'s fault it is, lawyers know that there is insurance money to pay up.







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Elena Miguel  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:03
English to Spanish
+ ...
Feb 15, 2002

[quote]

On 2002-02-13 19:20, MatsWiman wrote:

My advice:



Do not sign any contract making you accountable for the ensuing effects of your translation.

*********

I couldn\'t agree more with you. Once I was offered a contract making me accountable of the accuracy and the absence of mistakes in the translation (I guess I could have written any nonsense if I hadn\'t sign it!!!!!!),


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Lucy Simpson
Local time: 03:03
Dutch to English
+ ...
Text accuracy and insurance Feb 27, 2002

Having worked in tour operating for many years where brochures get crawled over with a fine tooth comb to check for accuracy (and woe betide the company if you printed an untruth) one of the first things I did when becoming a translator was to take out insurance (with Royal & Sun Alliance), wary of the consequences of any inaccuracies in a finished translation. I came to the profession armed with the knowledge of exactly how expensive printing costs are, and since I did a lot of marketing/published work in the early days, I worried about the tiniest inaccuracy necessitating reprinting, which they would try to charge me for. It never happened, but I felt far happier having the insurance.

Also, I used to do a lot of work for the construction industry - one wrong move on my part and a building could have come down. If the customer doesn\'t speak the target language, how are they to know if you have made a ghastly mistake? And if the end user doesn\'t speak the source language, how will THEY know? But you can bet your bottom dollar that after an accident lawyers would crawl all over the specifications and find out that it was the translator who had messed up. Where are you going to find the legal costs to cover that if you\'re not insured?


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