Professional Court Translation Services from MTT

MTT offers both legal document translation services and court translation services (interpreting). Our legal translators and interpreters are qualified solicitors or have legal training, meaning you can be sure that your translation or interpreting assignment will be carried out with accuracy and due care.

Court translation services – what kinds of services does this cover?

We offer a range of court translation services:

Certified legal document translation

  • Non-certified legal document translation
  • Assistance with legal forms (translation assistance only, not legal advice)
  • Interpreting in court
  • Interpreting in interviews
  • Translation of witness statements
  • Translation of court bundles
  • Interpreting in inquests
  • Translation of certificates, forms, applications etc

What qualifications and skills does a court translator have?

Court translators need very special qualifications and skills, as their role is pivotal in ensuring the legal process works properly. Our translators and interpreters will have an NRPSI qualification and training to ensure they understand the legal system and how to work professionally in it. They must remain impartial, reporting what is said directly and without any omission to ensure accuracy.

Many instances of court cases have been seen in the news where poor interpreting caused a miscarriage of justice. Ensuring the interpreter is familiar with court terminology, processes and regulations can go a long way towards helping things run properly. A translator in court is in a position of responsibility and it’s our job to make sure that a qualified, experienced interpreter is provided, who speaks the right language and dialect.

What languages do you offer court translation in?

We can provide both written legal document translations and translators for court appearances in any language. If a particular dialect is spoken, please let us know so we can check the interpreter understands the client and can communicate properly before the assignment.

How do you certify your court document translations?

In the UK, a translation can be certified or notarised in three ways. These are: basic certification, sworn certification and legalisation or Apostille. Which version you require depends on the nature of the document and its use. It’s wise to check very carefully with the body you are providing the translation to, to see exactly what they need.

Basic certified Translation

MTT provide a signed certificate on our headed paper, (usually) bearing the ITI seal. This declares that the document has been translated from the original document, or from a copy of the original, and that the translated text is correct and complete. This type of certified translation is accepted by British government offices, the Passport Office and most courts.

The Institute of Translation and Interpreting (ITI) provides its Qualified Members with special seals, or stickers, which can be attached to a certification to add confirmation of membership of the Institute. MTT are corporate members of the ITI and therefore able to certify translations for you, which we do free of charge in most cases.

Sworn/Notarised Translations

This type is used for official documents that have been requested by public authorities or government bodies. The translator needs to take the translation to be certified or notarised by Affidavit. It is a declaration which is made in writing and on oath (sworn) by the translator in front of a solicitor/attorney or a public notary that the translation is, to the best of the translator’s knowledge, complete and accurate. The translation is marked with a certified stamp.

When a translation is sworn before a solicitor (or a notary in Scotland), the legal professional does not verify the quality of the translation but merely satisfies himself as to the translator's identity. Certification does, however, lend weight to a translation: if, for example, a document is wilfully mistranslated or carelessly translated, the translator could be charged with contempt of court, perjury or negligence.

Legalisation (Apostille)

This is required for documents which will be presented to overseas authorities. Legalisation is the same as the previous formats except the signature of the public notary or solicitor on the sworn certification is checked (Apostilled) by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to be accepted by a foreign country (as part of the Hague Convention). The FCO usually takes up to 4 weeks to process postal Apostilles.

Special requirements

It’s worth being aware that certain embassies have a list of approved translators and will only accept translations from these people or organisations. For example the Greek embassy will check the signature of the translator against their approved list, so it is worth while checking you are sure what is needed.

Why should you choose MTT for your high court translation?

With over 30 years’ experience and ISO 9001 certification you can be sure you are dealing with an experienced, professionally run translation company. It’s in our interests to supply a translator for court who will do the best job possible, and the MTT Team work hard to match both language and subject area to the right court approved translator.

How do I book a court interpreter?

To book a court interpreter, get in touch with us by phone or email on to let us know what languages you require, when the case is scheduled for and where. It’s also helpful to know how long you expect the case or hearing to last. If we can also have any other background information or case bundles, our qualified legal interpreter will be able to prepare better for the assignment.

How do I get a legal document translation?

To arrange legal document translation, get in touch with us on 0844 856 1086 to let us know what your document is about, the languages needed and the format you need the translation back in. Also let us know if you need the translation certified and what kind of certificate you need. We’ll be happy to provide a quotation for you, usually within a couple of hours.