3 Things You Should Know About Legal Document Translation Services in Chinese

Before you say yes to that legal document translation in Chinese, take note of these. Work with a legal translator that has experience, specialization, and must be bilingual. By that a bilingual lawyer, especially for complex documents.

Finding an excellent Chinese legal translator is rare. So, you need to set the standards high and do your homework. Most of the disputes over contracts and obligations come from translation errors.

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make is to hire law students instead of lawyers to save money. Would you rather save more money but pay an exorbitant amount of fine or penalty over a mistranslation of a contract?

So, when you need legal translation services in Chinese, make sure you know what you’re getting.

#1 The investment is high, but it protects you from liabilities

Keep in mind you’re not paying for the translation service itself. You’re also paying for the experience and knowledge of the Chinese legal translator. It took them years (and decades), and some will have masters degree and PhDs, and specialization.

Legal translation requires focus. Moreover, most of it involves manual translation of contracts and other legal documents. The process may include the use of a CAT tool. It detects the repetitive phrases, names, and words. But at the end of the day, the translator would still spend time analyzing the context of the source texts.

#2 Specialization is a must, and the law has different branches, too

There are different branches of law. If you’re on a deadline and need to get that project done, ask the specialization of the translator. Legal translators know the terms generally. However, a civil lawyer would be better at handling contractual agreements than a press lawyer who knows the laws about press freedom.

A labor lawyer or corporate lawyer is knowledgeable about the labor codes in China. He can help in translating documents related to foreign companies and employee-employer contracts.

#3 Knowledge on both source country’s laws and China’s law

Last but not least, it’s essential that you hire a bilingual legal translator. He or she should both know English and Chinese languages and also has a specialization. It would help if you even considered that the translator should know the laws of both countries.

For instance, a document in Hebrew needs Chinese translation. The legal translator must be knowledgeable in Hebrew, English, and Chinese, too. Someone who knows the Israeli laws and China laws in that context. Same goes as for US companies and European companies. Legal translators should understand the existing laws to see the context of contract. Knowledge on both laws in the US and China for instance will help the translator navigate the pages correctly.

Your takeaway

A wrong translation of your agreement or contract can be your liability. So, never underestimate the three mentioned above. It would be even helpful if you have a legal Chinese translator who can work with you for the long-term. In this situation, it’s ideal to work with someone that fits your needs.

Are you handling loads of legal documents and need Chinese translation? Are you doing business in China and need help in contracts? Don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll help you find the right one for you.

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