Off topic: Prices certified translations / Québec
Thread poster: Mohamed Mehenoun

Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:42
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...

Posted via Mobile

May 28


I just got certified for Arabic to French, and was wondering what where the prices for marriage certificates, driving licenses, ...etc. per page



José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:42
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Certified by whom? May 29

The major issue in certified/sworn translation is acceptance across borders.

AFAIK two countries stand out for having national laws on this matter, Brazil and Spain.

Brazil has a law from 1943, never amended, stipulating that NO document in a foreign language (i.e. other than Portuguese) can be accepted by any Brazilian authority for legal/official purposes, unless it is accompanied by the corresponding sworn translation, done by one of its own licensed sworn translators in compliance to specific regulations.

The entire setup is explained at . Yes, I am a sworn translator licensed by Brazil for EN-PT.

A few highlights:
- BR sworn translators can only operate within the Brazilian territory
- There are sworn less than 4,000 translators, distributed in only 21 of the 26 states in Brazil; some states (PI, PB) have just one, on the other extreme, ~1,500 translators are in one state (SP).
- They must be Brazilian citizens to apply for the exam
- Prices/rates are statutory, however they vary from one state to another. The law expressly forbids noncompliance to these rates.

Spain has a somewhat similar law, dating back from the 1600s, presumably updated many times ever since. Likewise, ALL documents in any language other than Spanish must be translated by a Spanish government-licensed sworn translator to be accepted by their authorities for official/legal purposes.

A few of the differentiating highlights:
- Spanish sworn translators can operate anywhere on this planet
- They must be citizens of any EC country
- Prices/rates are deregulated.

To the best of my knowledge, most - if not all - other countries don't have such pervasive law. Requirements vary according to the purpose of the document and/or the governmental division accepting it.

Some countries have governmental unit (e.g. court) or regional specific examination and accreditation systems in place. Others have PRIVATE institutions (e.g. ATA, IoL, NAATI) examining and accrediting translators.

Wherever there isn't a national or regional LAW stipulating the requirements for a translation to be accepted for legal/official purposes, each receiving entity is free to set their own rules and enforce them.

To illustrate, my sworn translations done in compliance to Brazilian law are accepted by most government agencies in the USA, Canada, and Australia. Price is statutory, calculated on target character count. One point to be considered is that I - and nobody else - must do these translations; the law states that the job is personal. Certifying that it is a "true, faithful, and complete rendering into English done to the best of my ability" is part of my sworn translation.

In the USA, many governmental agencies accept certified translations done by anyone, while others require the signing translator to be certified by ATA (or perhaps by a private organization having similar status, e.g. NAATI). The point here is that there is no requirement to the translator and the person attesting and taking liability for that translation to be one and the same.

So - AFAIK in the USA - it would be acceptable to have someone translate the document, remaining anonymous. Someone else would sign an affidavit before a Notary Public, declaring themselves fluent in the source language and English, and taking liability for the accuracy of that (attached) translation, thus making it a certified translation.

So you can compare:
- Brazilian sworn translations, done by Brazilian sworn translators at statutory rates
- Spanish sworn translations, done Spanish sworn translators at negotiable rates
- Other certified translations done by some private organization-certified translators at negotiable rates
- Other translations done by anyone at negotiable rates, PLUS the affidavit at a negotiable price with its signature certification by a Notary Public

To the best of my knowledge, Canada has two (?) official translator accrediting organizations, whose credentials are often required in the translation of documents for certain purposes. However if you have been certified as an official translator by the Algerian government, Québec governmental agencies would accept your certified translations of documents issued in Algeria.

When it's a foreign document for Brazil, I know that a sworn translation like the ones I'm licensed to issue is a must, and it will be accepted; rates/prices are set by my state regulations. When it's a translation from Portuguese - in my case, into English - for other countries, though my gov't rates still apply, I ask the client to check with the destination authority whether a Brazilian sworn translation will be accepted, and if any Apostille or consular legalization will be required.

I know this doesn't answer your question, but hopefully it guides you to what answers you should look for.


Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:42
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
I am certified in Quebec / Canada May 29

I am certified in Quebec / Canada (sworn Translator) and the question was to know the prices I should charge my clients, in other words I just want to know the market prices to translate administrative documents and certify the translations...


Marjolein Snippe  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:42
Member (2012)
English to Dutch
+ ...
rate calculator May 29

Hello Mohamed,

Is this any use to you? I suspect these rates are on the low side even for non-certified translations, and I suspect you could charge more for certified translations, but this might be a starting point. In addition, minimum charges would not seem unreasonable.
Are you a member of a professional association/organisation? They might be able to help.
Good luck!

edit: forgot to add the actual link...

[Edited at 2018-05-29 12:55 GMT]


Alexandra Scott  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:42
Member (2006)
Italian to English
+ ...
Fellow OTTIAQ member May 29

You can rely on your experience as a translator in terms of the fees that you charge. To be honest, I charge the same rate for certified translations as I do for other documents.

Since certificates are often just a single page, you can opt for a minimum charge, which could be the same as your hourly rate, since exchanging messages with the client, setting up the project, translating and billing invariably takes at least an hour even for a single page.


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

Moderator(s) of this forum
Fernanda Rocha[Call to this topic]

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

Prices certified translations / Québec

Advanced search

BaccS – Business Accounting Software
Modern desktop project management for freelance translators

BaccS makes it easy for translators to manage their projects, schedule tasks, create invoices, and view highly customizable reports. User-friendly, integration, community-driven development – a few reasons BaccS is trusted by translators!

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
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search