You have questions? We have answers

If you don’t see your question displayed below, send us an email and we will be happy to respond.

Questions about interpreting and translation in general

What is the difference between interpreting and translation?

While both involve conveying meaning from one language to another, interpreting is done orally (through spoken word), while translation involves written text.

Why can't I use my bilingual friend to interpret for me?

While your friend or family member may speak two languages well enough, interpreting is a specialized skill, requiring training in technique, ethics, and confidentiality. Bilinguals are not necessarily very good at conveying meaning quickly and smoothly from one language to another, like interpreters do. To make matters worse, if a bilingual identifies with one of the parties for whom he/she is interpreting, it may lead to taking sides, which can skew the conversation. In other words, true meaning is not being relayed back and forth.

What is the difference between a certified and non-certified interpreter?

Certified interpreters are professionals who have passed an objective examination administered by a federal, national, or state certifying body. Examples include the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI), the Commission for the Certification of Health Care Interpreters (CCHI), the Judicial Council, the State of California, the Department of Health and Human Services (OR & WA), etc.

For language pairs for which certification does not exist, and for fields outside medical and legal, other forms of credentials are used to identify qualified interpreters. For example, members of AIIC are conference interpreters whose professional competence has been vouched for by their peers.

Certified interpreters have received training and/or education in not only interpreting but often in other fields as well.

Non-certified interpreters are usually untrained, paraprofessionals who often lack the skills, education and ethical standards required.

Is my interpreter required to keep sensitive information confidential?

Absolutely! In order to create trust, the interpreter must abide by the rules of confidentiality.Your interpreter is trained on the ethical principal of confidentiality and will keep your entire conversation in confidence. Interpreters are also bound by the principle of impartiality and you can rest assured that your interpreter will not take sides, either yours or the person with whom you are communicating.

Questions about Ortiz Schneider Interpreting & Translation

Does Ortiz Schneider use Certified Interpreters?

We use certified interpreters whenever possible. In cases where this is not possible due to scarcity, or lack of certification for a particular, rare language combination, we will use a qualified interpreter. In these cases, we find and contract the most qualified linguist available, and always partner with trained interpreters.

Does Ortiz Schneider use Certified Translators?

We partner with American Translators Association (ATA) certified translators and translators who hold equivalent certifications in their native countries, wherever possible. In instances where a particular language combination does not have an existing certification, or when a specialty translator is required, we will partner with the most qualified linguists available.

How much will it cost, and how long will it take to translate my document?

This depends on the length, style, type and language combination of your document. If you send us the text, we will happily give you a free estimate of the time and cost required to complete your assignment.

A Buyer's Guide

For a more in-depth buyer’s guide to understanding interpretation and translation, click on the button below, which will take you to the American Translator’s Association website, where you can download their informative material on the subject. Editions are available in multiple languages.

We strongly recommend you read their brochures if you are considering contracting an interpreter or translator.

Contact Us

Have questions, an interpreting assignment or a document to be translated? We are happy to answer your inquires. Give us a call, email or fill out an information form to find out more.