Interpreting for a Deposition – How You Should Do It and Why Court Interpreter Certification Program Will Help You Prepare
When considering pursuing a court interpreter certification program, or any other type of legal interpreter training program, it’s important to know what you need to get out of these classes in order to be successful in the legal field. Language training, proper legal ethics and legal vocabulary are only the tip of the knowledge iceberg when it comes to learning how to be a court interpreter.
What you might not consider off-hand, are the situations and expected procedures you will encounter as a legal interpreter – a standard court room trial is only one instance where legal interpreters may be necessary, but there are many more. A good court interpreter certification program will inform you about the legal situations you can expect to work in, and how to properly conduct yourself. One example is a legal deposition – a proceeding that occurs before a trial, where witnesses give testimonies under oath to provide both sides of the case with information. If the witnesses do not speak English, a court interpreter will be necessary.
Interpreting for a Deposition – An Overview
Where it Happens: As depositions occur before a trial, they are usually conducted in the offices of plaintiffs or attorneys involved in the case.
Who’s Involved: Alongside the parties of the witness’ (known in this instance as a deponent) counsel, the opposing counsel will also be present, along with a court reporter.
The court reporter’s job is to transcribe in short hand the proceedings you are helping interpret, and then to convert it to a full transcription at a later point in time. Some practiced legal interpreters have noted the importance of working with the court reporter, as in instances your interpreting will aid him or her in their transcription, and his or her knowledge can aid you if you are unfamiliar with depositions. If the court reporter’s short hand is being run through a program that converts it to the transcription in real time, it can also be useful to you in order to stay up to speed with the entire dialogue.
How You Should Interpret: Standard interpreting ethics apply in this situation, as always (which you will learn in most interpreter training programs). As you will be interpreting for the deponent, you will be both relaying questions from the counsels, and the deponents’ answers. It’s important not to simply tell the attendees what the answers are when interpreting to English, but to say them in first person as if you yourself were answering the questions. You will hear common court room interruptions – such as objections – but as there are no judges present, they are said simply for record; however, you are still expected to interpret them. Taking notes is a good practice in instances; such as if you need to remember names of people or places.
Prepare With a Court Interpreter Certification Program
Naturally there are many more nuances when it comes to interpreting for a deposition – which can only be learned through interpreter training and real life practice. However; in order to gain real experience, you must be a certified court interpreter.
Interpreters working in any court proceedings must be certified court interpreters – as mandated by the government. Therefore, simply reading best practices for interpreting certain legal situations is not enough to help you prepare for legal interpreting work. A court interpreter certification program will prepare you to become certified, while also training you how best to conduct yourself at depositions, or other legal proceedings, through role plays and vocabulary practice.
Don’t get tripped up at your first deposition – get started on your court interpreter certification training today. Get the necessary, in person training in order to pass interpreter qualification exams with our upcoming Legal & Court Interpreter Training Program in Boston.
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