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What is meant by legal translation?

Legal translation is simply the translation of a legal document from one language into another. Sounds simple enough, right? 

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Legal translation is simply the translation of a legal document from one language into another. Sounds simple enough right? Sadly not, this process can be extremely difficult, especially because legal documents have to be translated absolutely perfectly. Any problems could result in a void contract and the loss of lots of money, or even lawsuits. Due to the risk involved in this kind of work only the very best translators with years of experience can undertake this rather tricky role.


Furthermore there is far more to consider than just getting the language right. The following steps must be considered by any legal translation company. First of all the legal system of the country that the text is from needs to reflect the culture of the legal language. Or in simpler terms, the text itself needs to abide the rules of the country. Then, the person who is going translate the information needs to have a thorough understanding of the legal system of the country that the translated text is designed for.


Therefore it can easy to simply translate a legal text, but even if the language is water tight, it still might not make legal sense or apply in the same way as the original text did in the original country. So legal translation is a very tricky business so when looking for this kind of service you’ll have to do some thorough research or employ a legal representative to do this for you.


These kind of services normally offer a very wide range options. For example usually companies like these offer certificates of accuracy, witness statements, wills, trusts, incorporation articles, litigation and immigration documents, property labels and plenty of other services. So not only is the act of translating legal documents very difficult, but there is also such a huge amount of documents to take into account.


Another problem that plenty of legal translation services have to consider is the difference in legal language between the two cultures. Not only is the actual language of the country completely different, but in countries where the legal system is also different, then the legal terms will also be translated. All in all this kind of service can be a real headache!


There is help available though, in the shape of law dictionaries. These are extensive and often bi-lingual resources that help any legal translator to decipher the many problems that are often encountered when carrying out this task. The importance of legal translation is made even greater when a translated document is then presided over by a judge or lawyer. If the company makes any mistake in the translation then it is very possible that very serious legal implications could occur. Which in turn could lead to all sorts of problems.


To conclude writing legal documents is very difficult even at the best of timesPsychology Articles, and it is even more difficult when these legal papers then have to be translated from one language into another. So make sure you choose a good agency to go with.

Source: Free Articles from


Terry Tibbson-Jones is a professional translation executive, fluent in five European languages. Over his 10 year career he has specialised in helping businesses expand abroad with his legal translation service.

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