Role of the Interpreter
A court interpreter is a language conduit whose participation allows an individual who does not speak or understand English to participate meaningfully in a judicial proceeding
Modes of Interpreting
- Consecutive interpretation: The interpreter listens and speaks in a sequential manner after the speaker has completed a thought.
- Sight translation: The interpreter reads and translates a written document orally in court.
- Simultaneous interpretation: The interpreter speaks contemporaneously with the speaker. This mode of interpreting is often used when the court interpreter is seated at the counsel table assisting a non-English speaking party.
Difference Between Interpreting & Translating
Interpreting is the conversion of speech (spoken language) while translation is conversion of text (written language) from one language into another.
Interpreter Invoice form
Language Assistance Plan
Interpreter Services Complaint Report form
Code of Contact for Interpreters - GR 11.1
Preamble: All language interpreters serving in a legal proceeding, whether certified or not certified, shall abide by the following code of conduct. A language interpreter who violates any of the provisions of this code is subject to a citation for contempt, disciplinary action or any other sanction that may be imposed by law. The purpose of this code of conduct is to establish and maintain high standards of conduct to preserve the integrity and independence of the adjudicative system. Interpreters will abide by the following:
- A language interpreter, like an officer of the court, shall maintain the standards of personal and professional conduct that promote public confidence in the administration of justice.
- A language interpreter shall interpret or translate the material thoroughly and precisely, adding or omitting nothing, and stating as nearly as possible what has been stated in the language of the speaker, giving consideration to variations in grammar and syntax for both languages involved. A language interpreter shall use the level of communication that best conveys the meaning of the source, and shall not interject the interpreter's personal moods or attitudes.
- When a language interpreter has any reservation about ability to satisfy an assignment competently, the interpreter shall immediately convey that reservation to the parties and to the court. If the communication mode or language of the non-English speaking person cannot be readily interpreted, the interpreter shall notify the appointing authority or the court.
- No language interpreter shall render services in any matter in which the interpreter is a potential witness, associate, friend or relative of a contending party, unless a specific exception is allowed by the appointing authority for good cause noted on the record. Neither shall the interpreter serve in any matter in which the interpreter has an interest, financial or otherwise, in the outcome. Nor shall any language interpreter serve in a matter where the interpreter has participated in the choice of counsel.
- Except in the interpreter's official capacity, no language interpreter shall discuss, report or comment upon a matter in which the person serves as interpreter. Interpreters shall not disclose any communication that is privileged by law without the written consent of the parties to the communication or pursuant to court order.
- A language interpreter shall report immediately to the appointing authority in the proceeding any solicitation or effort by another to induce or encourage the interpreter to violate any law, any provision of the rules which may be approved by the courts for the practice of language interpreting or any provisions of this code of conduct.
- Language interpreters shall not give legal advice and shall refrain from the unauthorized practice of law.
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