How to Practice Safe Business with Legal Translation?

Sara Abadi

, Business

Do you think you have everything under control in terms of running a business? Entrepreneurs try to outsmart the business legalities, forgetting one thing that can ruin them is the legal laws and regulations when entering a local market.

Serving a global client base is a tough call, you need to be able to reach the customer in their native language and culture to promote a steady sale of your products and services. From packaging to labeling to product description, one thing misrepresented in a wrong way can mislead the customer and complicate the communication bridge between the customer and the seller. But this is from a customer’s point of view. What if you commit a legit blunder in the bylaws?

A translation failure can have horrendous effects on a business’s body.  Localization in this regard becomes necessary to avoid spending significant time on useless resources. In response, companies have to share a significant amount of resources, due to which legal translation services are required at a professional level.

Is legal translation a hype or a convenience?

To avoid any nuisance, companies need to decode the official documents in another language whether its litigation papers, financial documents, transcripts, patents or even legal rulings. Legal translators save the day by providing an excellent copy of original documents because being a subject matter expert, it’s their job to convey the information properly.

Now if you are thinking to hire a professional legal translation provider with excellent record there are certain things you need to consider before you let them involve in your business;

  • Differs from other translations

    One thing to remember (on a strict basis) is that each document has its own set of requirements to be fulfilled. Legal text can be interpreted in more than one manner which means you have to have a deep understanding of the concepts into the target language.

    Any misinterpretation or ambiguity like the document can cause legal proceedings to complicate matters and once a clean slate agreement can convert into a legal nightmare for either side. You cannot just hire any of the translators, you need a subject matter expert with an understanding of legal concepts, terminologies. For instance, a legal discourse in English is usually written in Passive Voice, which can be interpreted in more than one way if converted into German and vice versa.

  • Rules vary

    Legal conduits vary from country to country. To become a professional legal translator, a person has to become eligible on the grounds of passing a series of tests. In simple, words, requirements to become a legal translator will be different for each country.

    Let’s say, in North America, foreign legal speakers are hired rather than native speakers especially ones who have a degree in legal studies or have studied the desired language as a subject. Whereas in some countries, the government can certify all legal translators at once, or an oath is accredited as well or in some cases, a paralegal also acts as a legal translator. To make sure you have a competitive edge in the industry, hire a translator who has taken a language proficiency test in the target language.

  • Do not confuse translation with interpretation

    It a common misconception, to allocate translation as interpretation. Interpretation is vocal rather translation is written. So a paralegal sounds like an excellent option for a legal translation but professional legal translation services can do a better job as they have expertise under their belt.

    In legal translation, your goal is based on tone, style, and nature of content which needs to be translated in context to the legal terms into a target language. Of course, credentials vary concerning the country and the language you are interested in, however, legal translation requires referral context as well and updated information that remains legit even after a translation.


A translation provider is dedicated to helping you grow with the opportunity to protect your business from any legal flaws. But sometimes, as a business entity, you make errors and shortsightedness in your judgment is what makes things worse. Let’s take a long look at the following list to know what sort of mistakes you need to avoid;

  1. Clarify the content

    Legal translation is not as straightforward as it sounds. However, it indeed is a complicated set of legal terms and terminologies. You need to clarify the content and need to have a closer look at the experiences and the portfolio of the translation company.

    Ask them to give you an embedded text of how they work and about their rates etc. to have a clear picture.

  2. References

    If you neglect to ask any reference, that a blunder you are about to make. A professional company may not have the related experience to the desired legal field you are looking for. Asking for references will let you know about the response and the agency’s abilities to translate properly.

    Based on that provided reference, you can rate the translation quality, whether this is the right choice you are looking for or not.

  3. Fare charge

    Is there any additional fare charge you need to be aware of? Most of the time, businesses do not realize how much of a surcharge is being issued to them in the name of translation. They are oblivious to the fact that a translation is an associate with minor charges as well. Do lookout for the rates and apply for a free quote of various companies to learn about their rates and so on.

  4. Keep a contract

    Sometimes even word of mouth is not enough. The biggest mistake you can make is to take a translation company on oral terms and conditions just because you had previously worked with them. Yes, you are aware of their workings but despite it, business terms and conditions must be fulfilled especially in terms of legal translation.

    Sign a binding contract in a target language and the source language to avoid any case of future ambiguity.


Translation companies earn on a massive scale if they pitch the right client. Likewise, you can do business in great health if you have the right translator to work alongside. Take into account the minute details that can make or break a business investment. Once you learn and implement you can conduct your business offshores safely.