Mobile menu

CROSS-BORDER ISSUES: WORTH A SEPARATE FORUM?
Thread poster: Zenny Sadlon

Zenny Sadlon
Local time: 21:57
English to Czech
+ ...
May 2, 2002

[This ended up being a little longer than inteded. PLEASE, CHECK THE QUESTION AT THE END regardless of whether you read the whole message.]



The borders in the CROSS-BORDER could be those between countries or cultures. Let me give you an example. It is something I really need help surveying among all of you. Perhaps I am just not informed well enough. Here goes:



A repeat customer of mine for whom I had done personal document translations over the years sent me a frantic e-mail this morning from overseas. The authorities in Havirov in the Czech Republic informed her that the birth certificate issued for her newborn son and translated by me is not recognized by their courts for the purposes of registering her son, I presume, as a citizen of the Czech Republic. She was told that THE TRANSLATING HAS TO BE DONE BY A COMPANY IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC!



I told her over the phone to call the U.S. Embassy in Prague for help and said I would inquire with the Czech Embassy in Washington.



According to the website of the Czech Embassy in Washington, D.C., \"... each document must be presented to the local authorities in the Czech Republic and translated into the Czech

language. (The translations must be officially authorized.)\"



They fail to define the OFFICIALLY AUTHORIZED TRANSLATION. However, their website goes on to say that the Embassy \"...may officialy verify and approve translations for $7 per page.\" (I wonder if the locals know that.) WHAT MAKES THE EMBASSY THE ULTIMATE JUDGE TO VERIFY A TRANSLATION? It is its power to admitt or deny access, that\'s what it is.



I find the whole thing outrageous. I admit, though, it can be a nice little stream of income for the Embassy to offset some costs. And helps full employment at home, perhaps: \" If you are not able to translate the document, we can

provide a list of translators and interpreters. [I have been among them from the start.] Note that the translation may be performed and verified in the Czech Republic by a certified translator as well. The list of authorized interpreters is available at every notary\'s office and at the court.\" Nice deal. They charge cut-rate, bargain-basement prices over there (by my long established standards, anyhow). God bless them! They need the business. It\'s one up for the NEW WORLD ORDER, the Global Village where PRICE IS EVERYTHING.



DO OTHER COUNTRY DIPLOMATIC MISSIONS VIRTUALLY \'CERTIFY\' TRANSLATIONS FOR THEIR EXPATRIATES?





Direct link Reply with quote
 
Martina Ley
Local time: 04:57
German to Czech
+ ...
Well, it seems to be so ... May 3, 2002

Hello Zenny,



I have made the same experience with a document to be presented to the Austrian authorities. The translator had to be based and authorized in Austria.

I think that it is a rule with the authorities that the translators of official documents have to be from the home country.

I am sorry to disappoint you, but this seems to be a fact.

Some other standpoints?



Martina


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 00:57
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
They are the authorities and have the power May 3, 2002

I understand your position Zenny, but...

I have always been a foreigner, in diferent countries, and I have always had to provide translated certificates or other documents. Firs af all, I\'d never ask a translator to do the translation before making sure his/her translation is recognized by the authorities it\'s destinated to.

I have spent the whole month to send to my brother a copy of the book where his birth was registered, because a normal birth certificate wasn\'t accepted in France. Well, this copy was of bad quality, and some words weren\'t easily readable and I thought that a translator in France who has never seen such a chilean document would have more difficulties to do it. So after legalizing the copy at the Foreign Ministery, their translators did the translation, it was authenticated again by the Foreign Ministery , then I did the same in the French Consulate. And I\'m not sure that the authorities in France won\'t have any problem accepting it ! May be in France my brother will have to go to the Chilean Consulate.

It\'s always like that and if you want your problem resolved you have to follow their rules. Whatever they are, unfortunately.



Claudia


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Zenny Sadlon
Local time: 21:57
English to Czech
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
May 3, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-05-03 12:59, c.iglesias wrote:

I understand your position Zenny, but...



... First af all, I\'d never ask a translator to do the translation before making sure his/her translation is recognized by the authorities it\'s destinated to.



...So after legalizing the copy at the Foreign Ministery, their translators did the translation, it was authenticated again by the Foreign Ministery, then I did the same in the French Consulate. ...



...It\'s always like that and if you want your problem resolved you have to follow their rules. Whatever they are, unfortunately.



Claudia





On your first point, the customer\'s several documents had been accepted by the same authorities before. It could had been a fluke. I admit that possibility.



To your second point: Since 1999 the Czech Republic is a signatory to \"the Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (1961 Hague Convention). These documents will only need certification with the Apostille.\"



When it comes to accepting translations, rather than the original documents themselves (which is addressed by the above mentioned Convention), \"the Embassy can verify the translation submitted to the Embassy along with the documents\". (I shudder to think that people might be required to be mailing in their original documents in this age of identity theft or have to travel across the U.S. to make a pilgrimage at the Embassy in D.C.)



MY QUESTION HERE IS \"do other countries\' diplomatic missions VERIFY translations, as opposed to their authorities accepting only translations by their courts\' certified or approved translators? Can only \'translators residing in those countries\' be certified as court translators?\"



I understand the \"objective reality\" of it. I know that countries or states of a federation may set up systems for certification of court translators.



U.S. In the U.S. District Courts there is federal certification pursuant to Title 28 USC §1827, the Court Interpreters Act of 1978. So far there are federal certification programs for Spanish, Haitian, Creole and Navajo. (And ATA accredits only two Slavic languages, Russian and Polish.) In the states the situation varies widely. Some states (e.g., Washington, California, New Jersey) test interpreters of several languages. Many states have no certification at all. Some are trying. The National Center for State Courts has organized a consortium of states that is sharing resources for establishing standards and testing. Approximately 25 state and local

court systems have joined the Consortium.



On your last point of following rules, I understand the validity of that advice for achieving an immediate goal. However, as for long term goals, for me they are to help change the world for the better. Out with stupid rules, in with customer service.

Long live freedom without borders...

Direct link Reply with quote
 
bochkor
Local time: 22:57
English to German
+ ...
Just go after your money! May 3, 2002

Well, your repeat customer overseas should have inquired first from the Czech authorities in Havirov, whether they would or would not accept a translation prepared abroad (I can\'t see from your profile, what country you\'re in). That\'s entirely her responsibility, let her know that for sure!



So regardless, she owes you the money. The question is only: What will you be able to do to get it, if you\'re overseas? That I can\'t answer.



One thing\'s for sure: you shouldn\'t even get into the discussion about embessies and consulates, it\'s NOT YOUR responsibility! So don\'t even call Washington, save on your phone bill!



Just think about your options now, how you can collect! Collection agencies in Europe, suing locally (if possible) or at least contacting Czech authorities (to collect your fee, not to resolve HER matter!) , I don\'t know, sorry!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Zenny Sadlon
Local time: 21:57
English to Czech
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
A LOSING ATTITUDE ... May 3, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-05-03 14:27, bochkor wrote:

Well, your repeat customer overseas should have inquired first from the Czech authorities in Havirov, whether they would or would not accept a translation prepared abroad.



So regardless, she owes you the money. The question is only: What will you be able to do to get it, if you\'re overseas? That I can\'t answer.



One thing\'s for sure: you shouldn\'t even get into the discussion about embessies and consulates, it\'s NOT YOUR responsibility! So don\'t even call Washington, save on your phone bill!



Just think about your options now, how you can collect! Collection agencies in Europe, suing locally (if possible) or at least contacting Czech authorities (to collect your fee, not to resolve HER matter!) , I don\'t know, sorry!





It seems you believe in the justice and desirability of being punished for making such GRAVE MISTAKES as not suspecting that the same authorities which had accepted your translator\'s product will switch and waste the precious days (5 so far) of your vacation time. (Never mind that the ignorant clerk did not know or share the fact that the Embassy offers verification of translations.)



No, she doesn\'t owe me money. (Shouldn\'t you be flogged, incarcerated, strangled, and quartered for your mistake now?) If she did, I would not blame her. I should had been more diligent and know the situation. (I have been working on a project for 5 years and did very little translating of personal documents.) I should have advised her that she needs to get the translation \'verified\' by the Embassy. I will incorporate that newly gained knowledge on my website as a service to prospective customers.



I thought I\'d call Washington, but as can be seen from my original posting I got most of my answers from the Embassy website.



As for the diplomatic missions not being my responsibility, I never thought they were. My primary responsibility is my customers and service to them. I know that when I look after them, they take care of me. That is the difference between the New World attitude and the Old World attitude. (Just because the New World is getting older and corrupted by the Old World attitudes does not make the latter better, more desirable or ultimately breeding more success. )

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Zenny Sadlon
Local time: 21:57
English to Czech
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Long live Franz Josef! May 5, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-05-03 12:39, mley wrote:

Hello Zenny,



I have made the same experience with a document to be presented to the Austrian authorities. The translator had to be based and authorized in Austria.



Martina





Could their common methodology be the result of the shared experience of Austro-Hungarian Empire?

Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Maria Castro[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

CROSS-BORDER ISSUES: WORTH A SEPARATE FORUM?

Advanced search


Translation news





memoQ translator pro
Kilgray's memoQ is the world's fastest developing integrated localization & translation environment rendering you more productive and efficient.

With our advanced file filters, unlimited language and advanced file support, memoQ translator pro has been designed for translators and reviewers who work on their own, with other translators or in team-based translation projects.

More info »
PerfectIt consistency checker
Faster Checking, Greater Accuracy

PerfectIt helps deliver error-free documents. It improves consistency, ensures quality and helps to enforce style guides. It’s a powerful tool for pro users, and comes with the assurance of a 30-day money back guarantee.

More info »



All of ProZ.com
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs