When preparing documents to be used overseas, it may be requested that a translation of the document is also supplied. Providing a certified translation assists the overseas authority as they may not be able to read the English version. When a translation is requested from you, it is important to find out exactly how they need the documents to be prepared and whether the translations will need legalising.
If you have been asked to provide translations and an apostille on your documents, it is important to ascertain what documents they expect to be legalised by apostille. In most circumstances we see that the apostille is placed on the UK versions of documents and the translations are requested to provide clarity on the content of the documentation. However, we occasionally see that the apostille is also requested on the translations only or on both the English and the translated version of the document.
We also speak to customers that have been asked to provide a certifed translation, but not a ‘legalised’ version. If this is requested, they may be expecting the translation to be certified as a ‘true translation’ by the translator, often in the presence of a solicitor or notary, and the apostille is not required. If this is what they require we can have the documents signed by a solicitor, although we do recommend that you check with the people requesting the documents regarding their terminology. Sometimes they may state certified when they actually expect the document to be issued with an apostille.
In addition to having your documents translated you may also be asked to get the apostille certificate translated. For English, French & Spanish speaking countries the apostille may be acceptable without further translation as the apostille is already produced with these three languages. However, we are often requested to provide a full translation of the complete certificate.
When a translation is requested overseas, it is worth checking with the people overseas exactly how they expect for you to present the documents to them. There are different ways of processing documents and it is essential that you order your translation correctly. We recommend to any client that it is important to gain full confirmation from the people requesting documents overseas when any type of translation is requested.