Legal Translation in International Business

business languagesAs more companies reach out to global clients, the more efficient and effective communication becomes essential. It has become very important for business communication, product information, contracts, even websites, to be translated into languages that can be easily understood by target clients, partners, and consumers whose language is different from your own.

Business applications, patents and contracts, and communication that are legally binding need to be understood by all parties. Thus, high-quality legal translation is now a critical component in international business.

Finding coherence in differences

Errors of any kind are costly. For a company or business concern, the slightest of mistakes can translate into thousands, if not millions of dollars in losses. It could mean lawsuits, product pull outs or canceled contracts. It is essential that every single word in a contract or communication is clearly understood when translations are done.

Reaching new targets in languages they can understand is crucial in expanding your business. At the same time, you have many variables to take into consideration. The translation should conform to local laws, traditions, and beliefs. It must be in the right tone and nuances that are specific to the target audience.

For example, a company is undertaking a multi-million dollar transaction where each party speaks a different language. Let us say that one speaks English and one speaks Mexican Spanish. Native Spanish speakers know that there are several variations of Spanish, each of them with slight differences in usage and spelling. Add to this the fact that the legal systems of the two countries are vastly different from one another.

This is a scenario that is quite common. While many businesses are spending big bucks sending documents back and forth, most of them are not willing to spend part of their communications budget to pay for high-caliber legal translation. They do not realize that with their company’s millions on the line and a number of unanticipated legal ramifications, they should not rely on the translation capabilities of someone in their staff to fully translate a document that can either mean their company’s success or failure.

Complex process

Legal translation per se is complex, and in the field of international transactions and trade, the need to have competent legal translators is very high. The translator must be highly knowledgeable not only in the target language but also the source language, which includes grammar and syntax and comprehensive vocabulary. The legal translator must also be very familiar with international and local business terminologies and the laws of the source and target countries.

Legal translation is more demanding and requires higher precision. It needs to be exact on the rules of legal systems while closely adhering to the rules of language. Competent legal translators must have a full grasp of the law.

Rigid requirements

International law comprises various legal documents in a wide range of languages. It can be applied to international trade and commerce. The key component is to correctly and accurately translate legal documents into other languages. In the international setting, a legal translation should possess some critical characteristics.

It must be accurate

The accuracy of a legal document is seen in its syntax, sentence structure, and word selection. These are variables that exist between the source and target languages, therefore, they are not easy to validate in a legal document in the absence of a skillful translation. This becomes more complex when you factor in the fact that dialects and languages are culture-based. It is of critical importance to correctly translate unique legal terms into other languages, not only to make it possible for all parties to understand the document but to have it validated as an accurate translation.

It must be error-free

Mistakes in the legal translation of the document have a huge impact on the clients. For example, an international business contract must be fully understood by all parties. All the unique clauses specific to the company should be included. Any mistake or failure to include everything in an international business contract could lead to a very expensive international contract dispute, which involves money and time for both parties.

Watch the Youtube video below for legal vocabulary (contract law).


A visionary company knows that new fortunes could be made from emerging markets, which means markets that speak various languages. Developing these markets means speaking to them in their own language. Efficient and accurate legal translation will ensure that mistakes are obsolete. Given the international setting, it is very imperative that accuracy and efficiency in communication are maintained in all business transactions, especially in legally-binding documents.

Legal translation for international business is offered by several language services companies. Make informed decisions when choosing a provider. Ensure that they specialize in legal translations; they have the years of experience in the kind of translation work you need, and they have a team of subject matter experts to take on your project. Quick turnaround time is essential because time is essential in international communication due to time differences. See to it that their rates are competitive and you’ll be paying for the exact legal translation services that your company and your business partners require.

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