Sworn translation has recently become very important due to international trade, the creation of political-economic blocs, migration and tourism. But what is that? It is about this professional that Global Languages will discuss in this article.

What is sworn translation?

A sworn translation is generally recognized as an officially accepted translation of a legal document or any document that needs to be accepted in a legal situation, such as birth certificates, academic certificates or statements. Sworn translations are always necessary when a translation is to be used for administrative purposes or governmental requirements.

There are no fixed regulations on sworn translations, as the requirements depend on the country in which they will be used and, therefore, the regulations may change according to the location. That is why we can also refer to this type of translation as certified, public or official, depending on the translation process for the target country.

However, there are a few different processes required to validate a translation based on the country of origin of the translation and the country to which the final document will be delivered.

Sworn Translator

A translation can be considered officially certified if the document has been translated by a “sworn translator”. There are some countries like Spain, France or the Netherlands, where a translator becomes a sworn translator taking an oath before a court, so that their translations are accepted as a complete and faithful version of the original and in accordance with the required laws.

These translations also include the translator’s signature and stamp. In countries like Brazil, the United Kingdom or the USA, this does not exist. Here, a translation can be authenticated if it is signed by the translator in the presence of a lawyer or notary; however, the lawyer or notary does not guarantee the veracity of the document, on the contrary, the translator who signs it assumes all responsibility.

Hague convention apostille

To make this process easier and faster, the Hague Convention of October 5, 1961 drafted the Hague Apostille, which is a stamp or printed form containing ten standard numbered fields. It ensures that all documents from administrative or judicial bodies of each of the 51 countries that signed it are valid in those countries.

Therefore, any certified translation must be accompanied by this guarantee to be effective. This apostille certifies that the person who sends the translation acts as an attester of the document and attests to the accuracy, integrity and official value of the document.