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Rate for telephone interpreting
Thread poster: Sybille

Sybille  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:02
Member (2003)
English to German
+ ...
Jul 28, 2004

Dear collegues,

I would like to know how much I could charge for the time of telephone interpreting, i.e. the company requiring telephone interpreting is paying the phone costs (my way there is 30 m only, because my office is in the same building). So I only should charge them for the time needed (but it will be the case rather often that they will ask me to come over).


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teju  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:02
English to Spanish
+ ...
Suggestions Jul 28, 2004

Are you asking if you should charge someone for the time it takes you to get to your assignment of telephone interpreting? If that's the case, someone in your own country would be able to answer you better. I live in the U.S. and I do a lot of telephonic interpretation. When I do telephonic hearings in the court, I'm paid mileage and travel time, but it's a government agency, so they have established guidelines. I also do telephonic interpretation from my home, and of course, that problem doesn't exist in that setting.

We need someone to reply who lives in Germany, or at least, somewhere in Europe, who does this sort of thing.

Good luck to you!


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Sybille  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:02
Member (2003)
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Rates - telephone interpreting Jul 29, 2004

Thank you, teju, for your suggestions.
But my situation is a little bit different. My office is situated
in the building of the former company I worked in, now I started my freelance business in the same building and will be getting most of the work from them now. There is a corridor to go over to that part of the building (which is approx. 30 m.), where my former collegues work and sometimes have to do telephonic interpeting. So they will call me to come over to them to do the telephonic interpreting there (on their costs= cost of that company. It will take me almost no time to go there.
So my question only includes: how much should I charge for the time
of interpereting on their telephone. (Could I divide my normal rate for interpreting by 4, let's say, if I have to do the telephonic interpreting for 15 minutes?) Or would you offer them another rate?

Best regards

Sybille


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teju  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:02
English to Spanish
+ ...
It's your decision Jul 29, 2004

So my question only includes: how much should I charge for the time of interpereting on their telephone. (Could I divide my normal rate for interpreting by 4, let's say, if I have to do the telephonic interpreting for 15 minutes?) Or would you offer them another rate?

Sibille, I don't know what's the norm in Europe. I can only tell you that in the US, courts establish a minimum of two hours for assignments, to make it worth your while to book the morning or the afternoon for an assignment. When I interpret at depositions, I also do the same thing. I have them sign an agreement accepting that there is a two hour minimum charge.

The situation is very different with you in the same building. It's not a problem for you to go from your office to theirs, down the hall. Then you need to decide what would be the minimum assignment you would accept. I have friends who round things up to the nearest quarter hour, and others who round it up to the nearest half hour. Would it be disruptive for you to get up to take care of a 10 minute phone call? If you would otherwise be spending your time working on translations, and you don't mind the interruptions, then bill them for every 15 minutes. I would not divide by four your regurlar hourly rate. I think a 15 minute rate needs to be more lucrative to be worth it. It makes perfect sense that the hourly rate would be cheaper.

Something else to consider is how much work are these people going to give you. I think I would be a lot more accomodating with my client, if they gave me a lot of work.

I hope this was helpful. Good luck to you!


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Sybille  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 15:02
Member (2003)
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Rate for telephonic interpreting Jul 30, 2004

Thank you, teju.
I think I will round it to 15 minutes at least, but continue thinking about the rate. They give me a lot of other work.

Sybille


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