It is fairly common when moving to or operating in a different country to your own, that the country will require bureaucratic procedure to be carried out in that country’s language. Spain is no different. All official documentation must be presented in Spanish.
And if all your documents are in English, then you are going to need a sworn translator of English to Spanish. This guide will tell you what you need to look for to be sure that your translation is correct and legal.
How to ensure the translation will be accepted by public bodies
A sworn translator effectively acts as a notary who attests to the fact the the translated document is a true representation of the original text.
A good sworn English translator will be authorised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of Spain (MAEC). This essentially means they will be pre-authorised by the Spanish government to carry out this type of work.
They will have had to pass the official exam set by the MAEC, which then gives them the right to register as a notary and use the official stamp that is recognised officially.
Check they can work with a range of documents
If translation was easy, we would all be able to do it armed with Google Translate and a laptop. The truth is it is not easy, and direct translation in specialist subjects rarely works. And that is before you have even considered the grammar.
The chances are that if you are required to have a sworn translation of a document it is an important one. And you need to be absolutely certain that it is accurate at using the correct type of language for the subject at hand.
Any kind of text may need to be translated. For example power of attorney documents, driving licences, passports, bank statements, and birth, marriage or death certificates. You may also need business documents translated such as contracts, patents and invoicing information.
And if you are a British or North American university student intending to complete your studies in Spain, you will need your academic record translated too.
This works both ways, you might also require a Spanish to English sworn translation, and a good sworn translator will be able to do both, and undergo rigorous reviews of the translation before certifying its legitimacy with the formal stamp.
With this stamp your Spanish to English translation will also be recognised by the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) and the British Government.
In addition, we also offer certified English translations in the United States, accepted by the USCIS, the US Citizenship and Immigration Service, and even English translations certified and notarized in the United States through our Dearborn, Michigan office. We can also help you if you have to submit a certified English translation in the UK, according to the requirements of the British Government. We certify English translations into any language for the United Kingdom and the United States.
Choose a sworn translator that operates internationally
Sworn translations are a specialist skill. As such getting a sworn translation completed can take time, and it is best to be prepared. This may mean getting the stamped translation carried out as early as possible from a different country, and having the document delivered to you well ahead of time.
It may also need to be notarized outside of Spain, for example by a US notary. Be sure to check this service is available from the provider you choose if it is something you will need.
Look for certifications of quality
The best translation agencies should be certified according to ISO 9001 standards, and also the ISO 17100:2015 standard for quality translation. The standard requires that both the translators and reviewers must be masters of their native language and with a certain level of university education, typically in translation and interpretation.
It also requires that they be technical experts on the subject matter also, gained through years of translation work.
When a translation agency is held to these standards, you can rest assured that your sworn translation will be of the highest accuracy and quality.