What Is An Official Document?
Maybe you began your search for an official document translation service by first asking the question “What is an official document?” When the better question is “What makes a document official?” Let’s explore. When this article is complete, you’ll know if you want official document translation or an official document translation service.
What Comes First?
Is the document official or does the document become official?
Let's Make It — Official
Many people searching for document translation are not aware of the distinction between an official document that needs translation and the term official document translation.
While U.S. government documents are inherently ‘official’, when a document is certified, it then becomes official in nature. Neither are known to fall into any defined classification of official.
The nuance by which official document translation is different than official document translation service how the word official is used. Identifying when official is a noun or adjective is the trick.
Official document translation
Official document translation.
Here the word official is used as a noun.
You want a document of official standing translated. It may or may not require an authorized or certified translator.
Official document translation Service
Official document translation service.
Here the word official is an adjective.
You want a document made official or service performed by an authorized or certified translator.
Adding the word service is another key to understanding. Once it’s applied the document ‘may’ become official if the document receives an official seal or certification in the process. Another litmus test is to determine if your document is official is if it is passing through government hands.
Official Document Classification
Official documents (i.e., those issued by government entities and recognized institutions) tend to get “official” translations the most (alongside other private documents). Official is used in this capacity as a noun. It’s a thing.
Official documents include, but are not limited to: birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates, and other legal or official documents. Official document translation is a bit trickier than general translations because the person translating these documents must be careful not to introduce any errors that could result in them becoming null.
In addition to this, they must also take into consideration the intricacies of any guidelines or protocols that surround the proper translation of these documents.
Official Document Translation Around The World
For example, if an official document is written in English and can’t be understood by someone familiar with common phrases used in everyday speech, it will not be accepted as a valid official document. This is because it isn’t representative of the rules surrounding what constitutes an official document.
As declared by the United Nations, only one official language exists for all member states. English is currently the official language of The United States and many other countries around the world; however, this can change to other languages like French or German depending on which country you’re in if that country falls under certain language restrictions set forth by the United Nations.
For countries without any official language, an official document translation must be performed for any legal proceedings such as marriages or adoptions to take place.
For example, if a couple wants to get married and one of them was born in France and the other in Spain, they will need to have their marriage license translated into both French and Spanish by official document translation services.
The same is true for countries with multiple languages; if a marriage license needs to be written in both French and English, an official document translation service will need to be used to ensure that the proper legal requirements are met.
In all of these examples, the term official document translation is referring to a thing. It’s still a noun.
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Choosing An Official Document Translation Service
If you’re considering working with an official document translation service or company, make sure that they’re certified, experienced, and have a proven track record of success.
For example, you wouldn’t want to work with a company that’s brand new on the market or a one-man translation operation.
While they may offer affordable rates, they don’t have the experience that their longer-established peers offer. In addition, make sure that you ask for an official document translation quote so you can compare prices with other companies.
Did this article help you understand the difference between general document translation and official document translation? Let us know in the comments below!
If you need professional, certified official document translation services, contact Cal Interpreting & Translations (CIT) today for a free quote on your project. We use native speakers to provide you with the highest-quality official document translation possible.