Language: Your Partner In Legal Success

The years of school. The hard work of crafting just the right words. The attention to getting all the formatting requirements correct.

Now, can you trust that those words and those formatting requirements are correct when they’ve been translated into another language? As the founder and CEO of a global translation company, The Spanish Group’s Salvador Ordorica shares his experience in working with the legal industry.

Methodical, precise, and quality language translation is critical to success in global legal engagement. 

With so much at stake, cutting corners or failing due diligence in hiring translation services is not an option. Follow these key steps for translating success.

Human Or AI? 

Even reputable translation services offer machine-learned translation. It’s faster and costs less than having a linguistic professional perform the translation. For legal documents, AI is not a good option. AI translation generally delivers a literal translation of a document. Legal language requires a degree of complexity and a command of the legal language that AI simply can’t replicate. 

Experience

Simply because someone can translate the words does not mean they can correctly convey the legal meaning. Using the wrong terminology can compromise a contract or a case, so only hire a translator who has a background in the legal profession and possesses at least five years of experience dealing specifically with legal translations. 

Turnaround

How quickly will the translator prepare your documents and what recourse will you have if they fail? It’s hard to imagine that any professional service could take your translation job and your money without delivering the translation, but it’s been known to happen. Don’t do business with any translation service that won’t guarantee turnaround. 

Knowledge

Every court has its requirements for not only translations but also formatting—notarisation of the translation, original documents with a wet-ink certification on every page, signatures a certain way, a phone number on every page, etc. A good translator will want that information so that they can deliver it to the court’s specifications. 

Guarantee

Likewise, don’t do business with a translation service that doesn’t offer a full guarantee, not just on the turnaround, but also on the quality of the final product. If you don’t understand the language of the translation, there’s no way that you can, yourself, check the work. The best translation services will have quality control practices that include having every translation proofread by a second linguistic professional who is experienced in the law.  

Reputation

Look for testimonials from others who have used the translator’s services. Endorsements from other attorneys or legal organisations are a good measure of whether a translator is an expert who can deliver the product you need.  

When it comes to your reputation and the clients you represent, you want only the most meticulous translation service that doesn’t just perform translations but actually sees itself as a partner in your success. 

About the author: Salvador Ordorica is the founder and CEO of The Spanish Group LLC, an INC 5000 recognised enterprise offering expert translations in 90 languages globally.  He is fluent in English, French, and Spanish and is learning Mandarin Chinese and Portuguese.  He graduated cum laude with dual bachelor’s degrees in Political Science and International Affairs from the University of California Irvine and has studied at Universidad Complutense de Madrid in Spain and Institut d’études politiques de Paris.  He is an active member of the honour society Phi Beta Kappa and a frequent traveller.

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