Are you ready to seek out legal document translation services? If so, you’re in luck! With so many providers to choose from, it can be hard to know how to choose the right one. Our handpicked One Step Translation (OST) can help you a lot.
This article outlines some things to look for when searching for legal document translation services to make your experience with this business run as smoothly as possible.
What is your target market?
Many legal translation services providers are geared toward individuals who need business and contract translation services. Their target market is typically businesses that regularly engage in international trade or have dealings with foreign nationals. Still, there’s no reason why an individual can’t use these services.
Suppose you’re not a business owner or don’t engage in international trade, and you still need legal document translation services. In that case, you should look for a provider whose target market includes individuals. A good place to start would be a directory of law firms and legal professionals in your area.
How can you find the best legal document translation services, providers?
The best way to find a legal document translation services provider is by word of mouth. Ask your friends and family if they can recommend a good service provider. If you know someone who speaks both English and your target language, you might ask them for advice. You could also search for local legal document translation services providers in your phone book or online.
Another option is to search for specific terms on Google, such as legal document translation services or documents translated from English into Spanish. The downside of using an online directory is that most of them don’t list small companies because it’s more cost-effective to focus on larger companies with bigger budgets.
What are your needs?
Suppose you plan to produce legal documents in more than one language, such as for a multilingual corporation. In that case, you need an OST legal document translation services provider that offers both types of translations. On the other hand, if you want your documents translated by an individual translator or translators who are native speakers of your target languages, look for a company that offers both on-demand and staff translations.
Is there a budget?
How much money do you have available to spend on legal translation services? This should factor into your decision-making process. For example, suppose you only have a few thousand dollars set aside for such a project. In that case, you will want to find an affordable provider who offers high-quality work at a low cost. You may also want to hire someone who will help with cultural nuances and avoid miscommunications or confusion.
Asking these questions up front can help ensure that your priorities are aligned with those of your chosen company before you pay them any money.
Do you need an interpreter as well?
Suppose you’re planning on using a language other than English for your legal proceedings. In that case, there are two possible routes: Get an interpreter and a translator. Or get just a translator without an interpreter. It depends on whether you plan to speak in another language during your court hearings.
A translator only tells what’s being said; they don’t interpret if someone speaks another language during a hearing. If that happens, a separate interpreter is needed—which can be time-consuming and expensive. If it’s likely that foreign languages will come up, it’s best to go with both.
To whom should you talk first?
It’s hard enough to choose a translator; it’s even more complicated if you aren’t sure which questions to ask. If you don’t know exactly what kind of document translation services you need, speak with your legal professional or language service provider.
Your lawyer can let you know which documents must be translated and help provide insight into what other things may affect your decision. Ask about turnaround time, how much material will be solved, and how often you can expect updates on your project. Don’t worry about asking too many questions—your partner should want to help in any way they can!
What type of company do you want to work with?
Before you start looking for legal document translation services, it’s a good idea to understand what type of company you want to work with. Some companies are small and only do business in their local area, while others may have offices across several states or internationally. While there are advantages and disadvantages of both types of companies, if you know where you want your documents translated and you want your translations delivered quickly—think about choosing a company with multiple locations. That way, they can get your document translated in one area and then promptly have it somewhere else.
Does their portfolio meet your expectations?
Do you want more proof that they’re a reliable document translation service provider? Take a look at their portfolio and customer testimonials. If you’re considering a company for legal translation services, make sure that you check out their previous work. You can ask to see samples of recent projects or search online for examples of prior work. Check out reviews, too—if possible, read them in both English and your target language. When you have an idea of what type of work they do best and how their customers feel about it, then it’s time to start talking specifics with a potential provider.
Are they able to handle your workload efficiently?
What you’re asking for is an end-to-end solution, which is pretty uncommon among legal document translation services providers. The best of them offers all of your translation needs handling by one team (project managers, translators, proofreaders and designers), which makes it easier for you to handle localization needs. Your goal should be to find a single provider who can take over all your localization tasks at once.
Note: If a provider says that they have no in-house translators or wants to hire their own freelancers and send them out to you instead of hiring your freelancers, then they are not genuinely offering end-to-end solutions.
Can they offer a turnkey solution in which all your legal document translation services needs are met from beginning to end with no middlemen involved?
A good legal document translation services provider will be able to assist you with all your translation needs so that you do not have to go through multiple companies for different aspects of your work. A one step translation saves you time and money and ensures that everything is coordinated so that there are no mix-ups or delays. Look for a legal document translation services provider that handles everything from your initial contact with them, right down to get you started on using their services once they are hired by you. A good company is going to make sure that they help you every step of the way and take away all your worries about what would happen if anything went wrong.