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Simultaneous or Consecutive? The skillset for simultaneous and consecutive are quite different, and not all interpreters have equal capabilities. While simultaneous interpreting can reduce the meeting time by half the speed, it may not be the most effective communication style for your clients. Understanding the difference can save time, money and determine how smooth the meeting will run for you and your clients.
First, there are many levels of certification in the language industry. While contracting with an LSP can make things easier, the caveat is being able to hire a court certified interpreter who is in fact licensed by notable industry testing entities, as opposed to hiring an “agency certified” interpreter. The difference here is not just pricing; often it’s quality. Agency certified interpreters are interpreters whose skills have been assessed by the language agency they work for. For medical and for school or non-court related assignments, agency certifications are usually acceptable. However, for court and legal related matters, working with court certified interpreters is usually not optional but mandatory. To avoid compromising the integrity of the case, it is recommended that you utilize services of a court certified interpreter.
Currently, the law requires the use of California state licensed, certified interpreters for most legal and medical interpreting assignments. While hiring a court certified interpreter is ideal in every legal related situation; it is not always practical. It may be cost prohibitive or there may not be an interpreter available altogether. Choosing the appropriate level of certification will depend on the individual job or the requesting party. If you are not sure what you are doing, working with a respected; transparent language service provider (LSP) can make a huge difference. A skilled LSP will ask the right questions and guide you and your clients to successful outcomes.
Being “court certified” means your linguist has had his or her language proficiency skills assessed by a well-recognized industry testing agency. You can ensure that your linguist is court certified by asking for the interpreter’s name and cross referencing it with the following certification agencies:
Factors that influence interpreter fees include certification levels required for the job, language, availability of interpreters, duration of the job, nature of the interpretation, mileage, travel time and/or lodging. Depending on the level of certification, there is usually a two hour to a half-day, industry practice, minimum requirement. Scheduling interpreter services in advance will help keep costs to a minimum.
Advance scheduling, with as much advance notice as possible, will ensure local interpreters are hired. Hiring a local interpreter means you can avoid costs related to travel time, mileage and possible lodging for interpreters who travel across counties for assignments. If you are seeking to hire licensed court interpreters from the state of California, consider the fact that there are only so many for each language pair, within a specific region of the state. Avoid running the risk of interpreter unavailability by booking someone in advance.
"I practice law in various counties throughout California. I have utilized Excel’s language interpreter in court and have found its services to be professional and excellent. All of the court staff and clients were impressed with the skill, knowledge and services."
“Excel’s language interpreters have provided prompt and effective services in a variety of settings, including the Emergency Department, Acute Care Services, Surgical Units as well as facilitating communication during Mental Health Procedures.”
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