Court interpreters in the spotlight

There has been growing press coverage concerning the declining standards of interpretation in the UK court system recently.  This follows the implementation of a new system which sees Applied Language Solutions providing translation and interpreting services to agencies across the criminal justice system.  The Ministry of Justice agreed the 5 year contract with ALS back in August 2011 and it began in February this year.  It’s hoped the new central service will save £18m a year of the current £60m interpreting budget.

As with any new system there seem to be a few teething problems, which the ALS is trying to iron out.

Bad press
The Law Society Gazette reports it has received numerous allegations from solicitors about problems with the system and that some interpreters provided by ALS have not been sufficiently competent.

Interpreting servicesOne report told of how a clerk at Ipswich Magistrates’ Court resorted to using Google Translate when a Lithuanian language interpreter couldn’t be sourced by the service.  Other reports of the ALS not being able to provide interpreters have also been received by Mike Jones, Chair of the Criminal Law Solicitors Association.  He told the Gazette that incidents in Sevenoaks, Colchester, Leeds, London, Kent, Lincolnshire and Sheffield had been reported to him.

According to an online survey by CrimeLine (an education and training provider) completed by 80 lawyers and judges, 56% of cases had a no-show from interpreters between 12-16th March.  However, there has been a slight improvement since with only 4 in 10 cases affected by a no-show from an interpreter between 16-20th April.

The Gazette also reports the collapse of a four-day burglary trial at a London Crown Court was due to a mistake made by a Romanian language interpreter.  The interpreter incorrectly translated that the defendant had allegedly been ‘bitten’ instead of ‘beaten’.

Some good news
During this period of transition courts have been told they can temporarily book short-notice interpreters using the previous system.  However, this is probably of little consolation to the people who have already been affected by the system’s failing.

Here to help
At Enigma Translation we provide professional interpreters for individuals as well as businesses and can help with communication in legal situations.  This could be at a court hearing, a tribunal, a solicitors meeting or when dealing with the police.

We can also ensure that our professional interpreters will observe your need for confidentiality and remain impartial, whatever the situation.

Of course it’s not just legal scenarios we can help you with, in fact any scenario where there is a language barrier and interpretation is required our interpreters can assist you.  We offer consecutive interpretation, simultaneous interpretation and whispered interpretation.

Don’t rely on computer software or gimmicky websites to decipher languages in crucial situations, choose the personal touch of a professional interpreter.  Give the Enigma Translation office a call on +44 (0) 1604 750799 or get in touch via email or Facebook.

Business etiquette across the globe

Securing new business can be tricky even on home turf, so imagine the added difficulties of embarking on a new business relationship with a foreign counterpart.  The old adage goes that ‘you only get one chance to make a first impression’ and that carries even more weight when we’re talking cross-culturally.

Cultural know how
It not only makes good business sense to research your counterpart’s business but also their culture and the expected business etiquette too.  Familiarise yourself with the appropriate business greeting and a few words of the language.  Also consider how your business approach could be interpreted and make adjustments where necessary to make sure you get off on the right foot.

Translation servicesWhen in Rome…
For instance a firm handshake and maintaining eye contact is deemed a sign of trustworthiness by Russian business associates.  And the Japanese will be impressed if you master a bow on greeting, although they will accept a nod of the head or handshake from a foreign counterpart.

A good understanding of what is and isn’t acceptable will ensure longevity of your business relationship.

Engaging the services of a translator and interpreter
Unless you are fluent in the language of your new business associate it is a good idea to get both a professional translator and interpreter on board to help with written and spoken communication. 

At Enigma Translation we pair you with a translator who is qualified in the source language and a native speaker of the target language.  And importantly they will also have expertise in the area that you require translation support as well as cultural and business understanding.

Our team of translators are 2,000 strong across the globe and cover over 114 languages.  They are fully qualified professionals with at least five year’s experience and only translate into their native mother tongue.  They are available when you need them, often at short notice, which is why we can offer a same day service or completion within 24 hours.

Enigma Translation interpreters can support you in telephone communication and meetings ensuring that everyone involved is ‘on the same page’ thus aiding smooth business running.  They are also invaluable for corporate events and networking events.

And finally…
As the exchanging of business cards is still commonplace in the world of business, it’s a good idea and nice touch to have your details translated into the relevant language or languages of your new business associates on the reverse of your card.  And yes we can help with that too.

If you would like to benefit from the help of our translators or interpreters, just give us a call at the office on +44 (0) 1604 750799, on our mobile on +44 07930326698 or send us an email to: enquiries@enigmatranslation.co.uk.  You can also use our free instant quote facility on our website and contact us through our Facebook page.

15 interesting facts about Enigma Translation and languages that you might not know…

  1. Translation servicesEnigma Translation was founded in 2004 by Graham Bowles who is passionate about creating easy access to the translation of business services with his team providing a fast, easy and professional service to businesses around the world
  2. Graham believes “The world of language translation can be a mystery to many people and barriers are built up, hence the name Enigma – meaning a puzzling thing or person. With Enigma Translation, it is not a barrier, it`s a gateway!”
  3. Enigma Translation offer a vital service in the world of translation as approximately 75% of the world’s population don’t speak a word of English
  4. Our professional translators can assist you with the world’s most widely spoken languages by number of native speakers and as a second language (according to figures from UNESCO – The United Nations’ Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) (source: bbc.co.uk), which are Mandarin Chinese, English, Spanish, Hindu, Arabic, Bengali, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese, German and French
  5. Of the oldest languages known, we can help you with Basque which is spoken in the Basque Country in Spain located on the French-Spanish border in the western Pyrenees and with the modern version of Hebrew predominantly spoken in Israel
  6. Enigma Translation assist businesses such as Barclaycard International, The Carphone Warehouse and Alstrom Power as well as individuals with their translation needs
  7. Our worldwide network of over 2,000 translators can translate over 114 languages
  8. We are fluent in all the Slavic languages including Macedonian, Polish, Russian, Bulgarian, Belarusian, Ukrainian, Serbian, Czech, Slovak, Croatian and Slovenian
  9. Our full time translators can usually complete around 2500 words each day and our full time proof readers can usually complete around 1000 words per hour
  10. Enigma Translation’s professional interpreters are available at short notice to support you with language interpretation from consecutive interpretation and simultaneous interpretation to whispered interpretation
  11. Most of the world’s languages are spoken in Asia and Africa which is why we provide translation assistance with many of the languages used in these continents
  12. Enigma Translation provide a fast turnaround offering a same day service or translation completion within 24 hours
  13. Dutch is said to be the easiest language for native English speakers to pick up, while research shows that for those native English speakers who already know another language, the five most difficult languages to get your head around are Arabic, Cantonese, Mandarin Chinese, Japanese and Korean (source: bbc.co.uk), luckily Enigma Translation can accurately translate all of these languages for you
  14. You can find us and ‘like us’ on Facebook
  15. You can contact us by telephone on +44 (01604) 750 799, by email or via our website for all your translation and interpreting needs

Legal translations

Legal translation is just one of the many translation services Enigma Translation offer, you can find details of our full range of services on our website.

When might you need a legal translation?
One of the areas in which our translators have legal translation expertise is property law.  So if you are considering buying or renting property or investing in a time-share abroad, one of our translators could be a beneficial addition to your legal team.  Not only will they ensure you understand what you are signing, but they will be able to advise you on the implications of purchasing property in accordance with that country’s law.

Translation serviceBetter to be safe than sorry
Thousands of Brits who relocate abroad every year are prime targets for property scams and fraudulent property dealers in many countries.  According to the Foreign & Commonwealth Office Brits fall prey to misleading advertising, double selling, illegal construction and developers failing to complete properties.  Not to mention losing thousands of pounds in the process. 

They also warn that in some countries Brits have struggled to obtain the title deeds to their properties from developers making it very difficult to sell them.  Developers have imposed sales fees, high property taxes and service charges as delay tactics.  Some Brits have been trying to obtain the title deeds for over 30 years.

An eye for detail
Reading the fine print has never been so important and with a translator on board you will be in full possession of the facts and better positioned to ascertain if the deal is legitimate.  That way you can safeguard your well earned cash.

If things turn nasty
We also have professional interpreters available to support you in meetings with your solicitor and court should you end up in a legal dispute.

Tailored to your needs
The beauty of using our professional full time team is that we pair you with a translator who is qualified in the source language and a native speaker of the target language.  And importantly they will also have expertise in the legal area that you require translation support.  This ensures accuracy, continuity and cultural and business understanding. 

Whether your property purchase is for business or for pleasure, we can assist you with legal translations and also financial translations.  And because legal matters can be time sensitive we offer a same day service or completion within 24 hours, whichever suits you best.

So if you find yourself caught up in the legal system of another country or are faced with legal paperwork in another language, Enigma Translation could be just the answer you’re looking for.  Speak to us on +44 (01604) 750 799 or contact us via email, our website or on Facebook for all your translation needs.

Helping solicitors with translation

At Enigma Translation we provide legal translation and certification of documents for solicitors on a regular basis.  We also provide interpreters for solicitor-client scenarios too. 

Supporting solicitors
In the legal world solicitors are often faced with correspondence, legal papers and certificates in different languages and to ensure accuracy and avoid misinterpretation, they call on the help of professional translators.  They know all too well the legal repercussions that can ensue from a badly translated document.

Legal translationTranslators provide translation certification for legal documentation including: Powers of attorney, Affidavits, Prenuptial agreements, Wills, Deed Poll and Deeds of ownership.  For injury claims, immigration and emigration applications, Police clearance documents and witness statements that are acceptable for use in court and at tribunals.  Also for certificates including: birth, adoption, marriage, divorce and death as well as documentation generated by buying property here or abroad.

Why choose us for legal translation?
Enigma Translation’s professional translators have extensive legal experience and specialist knowledge of the legal systems they are translating to and from.  Pair this with their linguistic abilities – native speakers of the target language and qualified in the source language – and your legal translations are in safe hands.

Accuracy
Our full time translators can usually complete around 2,500 words a day which are double checked by our full time proof-readers.  They can usually proof-read an impressive 1,000 words an hour, ensuring your translated documentation is accurate and available when you need it.

Experience
Our translators have a minimum of 5 years translating experience and can provide translation of 114 languages.  They are well practised in legal translation concerning Civil law, Commercial law, Criminal law, International law, Property law, Employment law as well as Probate and Family law.

Translation certification
As certification requirements differ from country to country, we can provide translation certification as required by certain authorities and governmental bodies.

Why choose our interpreters?
Enigma Translation’s professional interpreters can aid you in communication with your client and other parties on behalf of your client.  They can help put your client at ease just by conversing with them in their native tongue – something familiar in an unfamiliar situation which may be confusing, stressful and scary. 

Our interpreters are invaluable for face-to-face meetings, telephone liaison and courtroom scenarios with your client.

Fast turnaround
We offer a same day translation service and our interpreters can be available at short notice for legal situations that just can’t wait, providing you and your client with much needed language support.

If you think our translation service would be a welcome addition to your legal team, give us a call on +44 (01604) 750 799 or email us with details of how we can help you.

You’ll find us on Facebook too.