Jack of all trades translator.

...an agency that translates marketing or any other document type other than exhibits has very different concerns. They will not understand the importance of adapting the terminology to the legal concepts of the US legal system.

Jack of all trades translator.

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Jack of all trades, but master of none.

A marketing translator should do marketing only and a legal translator only do legal translating. Here is why:

When translating marketing, the focus is on many different things. In fact, I argue that marketing should never be translated nor even trans-created, but instead should be created originally for the target audience in the target language. Campaigns, slogans, etc.… become useless, awkward, and counterproductive even, when translated.

Cultural aspects and target language expressions do not sound right and fail to convey the intended emotions to the target audience. As such, a marketing translator should have much more leeway and authority to modify the existing source material, even understand who the target audience is and participate in strategic marketing meetings.

What does this have to do with legal translations?

I wanted you to understand that an agency that translates marketing or any other document type other than exhibits has very different concerns. They will not understand the importance of adapting the terminology to the legal concepts of the US legal system. Or the importance of localizing the document you provide us with to the legal system of the target foreign country.

Whenever you provide us with an English document that needs to be served in a foreign country, we localize it, meaning, the terminology and legal concepts would be those based on the legal codes of the country of destination.

A document served in Argentina may have different wording as compared to one served in Mexico.

Likewise, foreign concepts must be adapted to the legal equivalent in the United States, or to its closest relative, when the target language is English.

A legal translator must be well versed not only in the 2 languages he is working with but in legal jargon and legal concepts and definitions. I know great translators that do excellent literary and medical translations, but they fail miserably at the smallest legal term, or that fail to be precise and literal enough in documents that constitute evidence as to the facts of a case. Every agency should have a clear understanding of the abilities of each translator and only give assignments to them based on their strengths. Do not give your exhibits to a jack of all trades.

Jack of all trades translator


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