Professional interpreting can have a significant impact on communication. This is especially true in the medical and legal field. If you are a lawyer, it’s quite likely that you will have a Limited English Proficient (LEP) client who may not be able to effectively communicate in English, requiring you to hire an interpreter.
Not only do courtroom interpreters work in court settings, but they are also heavily involved throughout every stage of the legal process. For instance, in some systems they are called to the interview following arrest, and inevitably these sessions take place at undesirable hours.
Court interpreters must naturally act with neutrality regarding the content and impartiality between parties. However, it can be difficult for interpreters to maintain neutrality due to the insistence by the “client” to regard their interpreter as an ally. As you can see, qualified interpreters must face a lot of stressful situations while they are assisting legal clients. In this post we will discuss what qualified interpreters bring to the table when they work with legal proceedings.
Bridging The Communication Gap
As you know courtroom discussions are littered with legal jargon. Courtroom interpreters are familiar with legal terminology in both English and their native language and will provide an accurate and complete interpretation.
Courtroom interpreters need to have a developed understanding of the language of closing statements, the detailed grammatical structures in jury instructions, the slang typically used in jail interviews (or on the witness stand), and the technical lawyer terms used in motions. Make sure that you hire an interpreter who is comfortable with all these distinctions in at least two languages.
The Role Of Consecutive & Simultaneous Interpreting For Legal Settings
There are two distinctive approaches for interpreting conversation: simultaneous and consecutive. With simultaneous interpretation, the legal interpreter listens and speaks at the same time- the interpreter will begin translating as the person is completing their sentence. Simultaneous is the preferred method for courtroom interpreting. On the other hand, consecutive interpretation begins after the speaker has completed his or her sentence and is frequently used in depositions and interviews.
If you need more information regarding the differences between consecutive and simultaneous interpreting, check out our post, “How Do Consecutive & Simultaneous Interpretation Differ?”
Keep In Mind: Interpreters are assigned to court proceedings so that defendants and witnesses can communicate effectively with the judge and the attorneys. Remember, they are not a party in the proceeding, and so they take an oath to act according to the judicial code of conduct.
iTi | Legal & Courtroom Interpreting Services
Accuracy in communication is paramount for legal court cases. Attorney’s can not afford any mistakes or miscommunication which is why our team at Interpreters and Translators, Inc. only works with highly trained and qualified legal interpreters and translators. We thoroughly vet every linguist to ensure they are professionals with legal courtroom experience. You can trust team iTi with all your legal translation needs. Feel free to contact us for your next project that requires an interpreter or document translation. 860-362-0812