Fly abroad and interprete
Thread poster: Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 15:16
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Dec 3, 2015

Dear Prozians

I decide to share my latest experience so that interpreters are aware of possible risks. I will not reveal the name of counterpart but they are translation and interpretation agency in an EU country.

They contacted my in August to travel and do interpretation in a long-term of around 5 months under project of very technical and top security training. We accepted on prices and related conditions of my travel into that country.
I studied that I need an employment visa and asked the agency for supporting documents, only 2 papers. They deviated the issue and said I will need a business visa -- by quoting the Embassy's advice -- which contained mistakes. I asked for other materials as well e.g. documents to be interpreted during training. They replied to me slowly in early November.

I continually reported about progress on my side. They kept silent.
I asked again and intended to test with their advice. They gave me an invitation letter in the end of November. I submitted relevant documents to the Embassy. The Embassy declined my visa application by saying that my conditions require an employment visa application.

I urgently reported to the agency and demanded the supporting documents for employment visa. They sent me via e-mail (based on kind advice of the Embassy staffs to shorten processing days). But the document was not a sort of employment contract. It was like a university short notes with signatures and the corporate seal.

I observed their poor English communication ability but attempted to fulfill this mission. I made another appointment for application of the visa again. The Embassy stated using web-based appointment system on December 1, 2015. The Embassy still has mistakes in the system and I could not re-appoint for visa application. I wrote around 10 e-mails to the Embassy to complain and request. No replies ever came to me.

I phoned to the Embassy. I heard only digitally synthesized voice. No human response was available. I found no phone No. of the Embassy.

I still have certain methods to apply and gain the visa but I finally decided to suspend this visit and tell the agency to cancel the assignment for me.

The agency simply accepted my demand and terminated our contact. I lost some amounts as expenses as well as time and labor in this case but the agency paid no attention to this issue.

The corporate I was intended to offer interpretation is a globally well-known high tech manufacturer. The corporate said nothing about my case. In fact I anticipate that many people will have trouble due to my suspending of the seal: around 50 persons--trainees--who will fly from Thailand to that European country, the corporate trainers and supporting staffs, the agency, the Embassy staffs, the Thai Government agencies etc.

This case is not a scam but poor communication ability and poor knowledge about labor immigration issue in the agency,

I remind of the security checks and risk management in this Proz webpages. I also remind of the word "red flag" which all interpreters who intend to fly and offer service abroad should aware of carefully. We should never enjoy just lighter side of job offer, but we should assess risks comprehensively.

Best regards,

Soonthon L.


 

Kristina Cosumano  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:16
Member (2015)
German to English
I am sorry this happened to you, Soonthon. Dec 3, 2015

I gather from your earlier posts that you were looking forward to this project and the trip.

 

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 15:16
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Project manager capability Dec 3, 2015

KristinaC wrote:

I gather from your earlier posts that you were looking forward to this project and the trip.


In this case, the project manager communicated with me from August. I also point out the qualification of the project manager needs to include fimiliarity with immigration laws if oversea linguist providers are expected to travel and work in a project. Legal advisers are also very helpful for visa issues since they have a logical way of thought and processing of administrative issues.

Soonthon L.


 

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 15:16
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Too good to be true Dec 4, 2015

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.) wrote:

KristinaC wrote:

I gather from your earlier posts that you were looking forward to this project and the trip.


In this case, the project manager communicated with me from August. I also point out the qualification of the project manager needs to include familiarity with immigration laws if oversea linguist providers are expected to travel and work in a project. Legal advisers are also very helpful for visa issues since they have a logical way of thought and processing of administrative issues.

Soonthon L.


In forum elsewhere, I posted about this issue as well. One of my Thai-English interpreters says she was contacted and met with similar situations.
It is fact and physical presence of interpreters is my serious concern.
Let's think seriously before moving on!

Soonthon L.


 


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