In this week’s installment, and in an upcoming blog, we’ll be discussing the different terms you may hear when shopping for a professional legal translation agency. Some of the terms described overlap or seem like they are the same thing, but we’ll explain the differences so you can always make an informed decision when it comes to translating your legal documents and materials.
Translation is the conversion of written text and meaning from one language to another. Translation aims to convey the entire text of the source document as well as the meaning. A professional translator will pay attention to grammar differences in languages, appropriateness of the text, spelling, word order, style, graphics, and concept to make sure the translated material says what it is intended to say. This is a good option for legal translation, but it does not necessarily take specific local cultural norms or adaptation into consideration.
In many instances, a good translation can be used across different geographic areas. For example, a good Spanish translation may be used in Argentina, Venezuela and Spain. The language is spoken in all these countries and will be understood by Spanish speakers. Legal firms can often use globalized translations for marketing or general communications in multiple markets that speak the same language.
When you are looking for a culturally targeted translation, that takes cultural norms, laws, references, traditions, local currency, and political figures or leaders into account and truly localizes your content for a specific target audience, you are looking for localization. Localization goes one step beyond translation, and not only translates the words and meaning, but also adapts the entire message to the culture and makes the message culturally appropriate to convey the message’s intent, style, tone and context. Sometimes this will be the best option for your legal translation. For example, if the document pertains to local laws, you will want to use a translator that is familiar with the laws in both the source and target languages and cultures.
Knowing these terms gives you a good basis for seeking the best possible translation of your legal materials. The experts here at Rapport International are always happy to provide you with free consultations to answer all your translation questions. Please contact us if you need more information or if you would like to receive a free quote for your project.
Join us next time when we talk about More Legal Translation Terms.