Why are Legal Translations Challenging?


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A misconducted legal translation will result in everyone being held liable. The dispute rarely ends well, with clients and the translation agency paying heavy fines. Legal translations include court documents, business registrations, permits, licenses, petitions, and resolutions. Here are a few challenges the linguist might face regardless of sufficient experience

Changing laws

Legal translation to Romanian is constantly challenging because of newer laws and regulations. Since the industries are prone to climate change or employee safety laws, the updates continue to surface, which the translator must be aware of. As a result, the templates and contractual language must also be altered to represent the updated content.

Translators working in the legal field must continuously study the changes as sometimes laws change overnight. They must stay updated with the rules of the translated language and the source document, which might affect the text. Due to such complications, legal translators are usually lawyers and paralegals with previous associations with professional bodies.

The sub-structure of the legal language

The second challenge in legal translation is the language itself, most prominently the sentence structure and terminologies. Since there aren’t many close substitutes, the translator has limited flexibility to employ alternate terms. The rigidness prevents misinterpretation and misuse of legal translation to the Romanian language.

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The linguist must first understand the content and interpret it to successfully translate a legal document. Unfortunately, the translated copy is constructed on a limited framework that does not celebrate enough room for creativity. It is one of the only forms of translation that restricts thoughtfulness as resources are diverted to translating the source content instead.

Tight deadlines

Most of the time, translators are faced with strict deadlines in legal translations. This is because a translation to Romanian from the legal sector is later presented in courts in front of judges to move forward with the proceedings. Furthermore, it is incredibly likely the translations will become part of the official record.

Unfortunately, if the translations are delayed, the client and the translator are accountable. The linguist can be held in contempt in court for disrupting processes. Therefore, any party associated with legal translations must work together to meet strict deadlines or otherwise prepare themselves for unpleasant events such as answering a judge.

Understanding the legal syntax

The challenging part of a legal translation is the syntax, other than the language. A legal translation of Romanian consists of strict terms heavily influenced by foreign dialects and languages. Furthermore, the source document and the translation usually use the passive tense with complex sentence structure and multiple phrases.

The translator must be versed in commas, apostrophes, em-dashes, and semicolons. In legal translations, the linguist is an author, a proofreader, and an editor in a single form. Moreover, the punctuation varies from dialect to dialect or region to region, which must also be adopted.

Variation in legal language

It must come as no surprise the legal system varies from country to country. Moreover, laws may be different within the country as we cross state or provincial boundaries. With so many variations, the linguist must identify the targeted reader before commencing the legal translation.

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Regardless, the strategy does not make the legal translation any easier. The responsibility lands on the translator’s shoulders to identify the variances and the similarities to deliver a professional translation. Therefore, linguists are specifically trained to identify the correct vocabulary usage to prevent future misunderstandings.

Hire Kings of Translation for legal translations

If you have made it thus far, you will agree legal translations are not a walk in the park. The translations are filled with challenges that require skills, legal knowledge, and specialization to execute the project successfully. Contact Kings of Translation for legal translations acceptable by the Ministries of Justice, courts, and other official institutions.

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