Can a US freelancer be a sworn translator in another country?
Thread poster: Steven Capsuto

Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:13
Spanish to English
+ ...
Dec 29, 2003

I'm a freelancer in the U.S., and occasionally am tempted to bid on overseas jobs (usually for EU countries) that need a sworn translation. Most of the jobs are from Spain, though some are from other countries. Is it possible for me to become a sworn/public translator for another country, perhaps through the local Spanish/French/etc. consulate in my home city?

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Jane Lamb-Ruiz  Identity Verified
French to English
+ ...
every country has its own standards Dec 29, 2003

If you live in the country and take the test you can.

I don't believe you can take a test through a consulate.

Find out via google what the deal is for a specific country. Tests are taken in-country as it were. I don't know if someone countries require nationality. I would not imagine so. Most probably just require you to take it at the official place it is given.

Cheers


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Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:13
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Dec 29, 2003

I've done some more nosing around, and it turns out that only EU citizens are eligible to be sworn translators for Spain.

Un saludo.


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mbc
Spain
Local time: 08:13
Spanish to English
+ ...
not in Spain w/o EU citizenship Dec 29, 2003

in order to be a sworn translator in spain, actually in order to take the exam, you must have EU nationality.

good luck!


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Edward Potter  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:13
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
How to become a sworn translator in Spain. Dec 29, 2003

You can almost forget it. There are 2 ways in Spain to become an officially sworn translator:

1) Get a five-year translation degree with an emphasis on legal translation from a school officially recognized by the Spanish government (there are about 5 in Spain).
2) Pass the test.

The easier way is the former, by far. Just signing up to take the test is a bother. You have to constantly be reading the Official State Bulletin (B.O.E.) from March to June in order to sign up. Once the announcement is made, you have only about two weeks to pay the exam fee and send in your form. If you only find out a few days beforehand and you have little time or the banks are closed, I'm so sorry, you won't be taking the exam this year. When the exam date in October rolls around you must show up in person at the designated place in Madrid (and only this place, not any consulate or embassy abroad). Two years ago 1500 people had registered in that two-week time frame a few months before. This year only 800 showed up. Out of the 800, 18 people passed the written part, thus qualifying them to show up for the oral part.

There are a lot of interesting issues about ethics and certification standards in the middle of all this. It would be interesting to start a discussion about this for the people who are interested in certification in Spain.


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:13
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
There is a third category recognised by the MAE Dec 29, 2003

Be an EU translator. That's the nationality requirement plus the open competitions held by the EPSO.

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Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:13
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Gracias Dec 29, 2003

Thanks to everyone who replied. Apparently this is not an option for me, as I am a U.S. citizen.

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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:13
English to Spanish
+ ...
ORIGIN Dec 29, 2003

You might consider this, if the origin of the translation is USA, then there is no such thing as a "sworn translator" because no such designation exists.

However, if you obtain an official certification, such as status as a U.S. Federal Court Certified Interpreter (part of the job description is translation), and accompany the translation with a sworn statement and the origin is USA, it should fly unless the receiving country requires it to be done by someone there.

I have done many treaty documents with such status and they have always been accepted in Mexico. They just require a translation, but they do not say by whom.


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Julio Barrios
Uruguay
Local time: 03:13
Spanish to English
+ ...
Certification / being sworn in.... Jan 7, 2004

That is a great question. I have been in the linguist field for some time now. Have worked for several companies as a bilingual customer service etc. Wanted to be certified by ATA or similar thinkig that it will help and got some negative feed back from some other translators. Some companies or institution will respect your background as well and will recognize it. Standards for the UE I am sure are more strictier than here US, it is a cultural issue there. For feedback please feel free to write me at: jabarrio@montevideo.com.uy since I do not participate in the forum very often. Wish you luck and let me know of any news.

Thanks....

julio


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 08:13
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Sworn translation in South Africa Jan 12, 2004

Steven Capsuto:
I'm a freelancer in the U.S., and occasionally am tempted to bid on overseas jobs (usually for EU countries) that need a sworn translation.


I get many queries from South African clients who require sworn translation that I put the following note on my web site:

{start quote}
Sworn or certified translation: In South African and some other countries certain official documents must be translated by a sworn or certified translator, failing which the relevant authorities may not accept the translation as an official document. In South Africa, only originals and certified copies of originals can be translated thusly; one cannot make a sworn translation of a faxed, e-mailed or non-certified photocopied document.
{end quote}

To become a sworn translator in South Africa, you need to pass an examination set by any other sworn translator (or one set by the South African Translators' Institute) and then be sworn in by oath at any High Court before a judge. Your name will then be added to the sworn translators' roll.


[Edited at 2004-01-12 15:21]


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José Luis Villanueva-Senchuk  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 03:13
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not in Argentina... Jan 14, 2004

Hola:

In order to be a sworn translator (Traductor Público) in Argentina, you must have a university degree in "Traductorado." You then go to the Colegio de Traductores (like a bar association) It varies from university to university and province to province but most are the same.

The "traductorado" at the Universidad de Buenos Aires is coursed at the Law School for 4 years. During 3 years, one studies with lawyers-to-be... They are semi-lawyers They have to pass the test at the Colegio de Traductores Públicos to get the "stamp and seal".

As you see, it is not a mere test.

If you wanted the license here, you will have to pass all the courses (law) although they might give you credit for the lingua subjects and then pass the test. The process might very well take over 3 years so you might want to course for 4...

Ciao.

JL


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