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 »  Articles Overview  »  Art of Translation and Interpreting  »  Translation Techniques  »  Translating Certificates

Translating Certificates

By Krokatao Consulting | Published  06/28/2006 | Translation Techniques | Recommendation:
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Quicklink: http://www.proz.com/doc/768
Author:
Krokatao Consulting
Canada
English to French translator
 

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Translating certificates is a difficult and time-consuming task. On the one hand, the terminology that you use should be verified with the standards of the country or the organization the certificate shall serve before. On the other hand, you need to do some formatting by indicating where stamps, apostilles, and logos lie.

Translating certificates requires some research. You have to make sure that the translation fits the legal requirements of the authorities for which it is issued and/or translated. You have to know what the generally accepted way of presenting a certificate is. Sometimes, you may need a piece of advice from a local lawyer or administrator. Make sure you contact a genuine professional.

For uncertified translations it is not required to keep the initial format of the document. Basically, you can change the format so that the document is intelligible and organized. However, you need to keep all the information that has been initially on the certificates. In my experience, there are translators who do not do document formatting or charge additional prices for it. For certified translations you should definitely do some basic formatting. It will be best if the translated document resembles the original. For example, you could cut and paste a logo from the original to the translation; or you may insert text indicating that there was a logo in the original; or you may insert a text box that resembles the format of the logo in the original and specify in words that there is a logo in the original that goes at the same place.

When a certificate has text on both sides of a page make sure to indicate in your translation that you are translating, for example, the back of page one of the original document, which may be page one of the translated document.

You have to stamp and sign the front of every page of the documents, and of course include a legal statement at the end of your translation. It is obvious that you are legally responsible for the quality and truthfulness of the translation. Do not forget to attach the original document to the translation.

Another crucial point about translating certificates is that you should be extremely cautious about mistakes of any sort. Certificates are not textbooks! A single spelling mistake may cause major trouble. Always verify a few times for errors. Ask your clients, if possible, to verify their own translated certificates. This is especially important in cases of certified translations.

Once you have translated a certificate you can use the form in order to translate other certificates by creating a document template. It is important to store your templates in an organized manner. Often, it happens that one cannot find templates that one knows exist. Storing only document templates on your computer might be a good way of avoiding abuse of private information. You do not want to be responsible for a database of birth certificates, do you? Carelessness may result in economic losses at best.

Difficulties aside, translating certificates is a profitable venture.
Did I say good luck?


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