What is a certified translation?

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What is a certified translation?

A certified translation is not the same thing as a certified translator.

Many countries offer certification exams to test an individual's professional translation skills. The exams vary from country to country. To be a certified translator, an individual will have had to pass one of these exams.

A certified translation is a translation accompanied by a signed statement attesting that the translation is accurate and complete to the best of the translator's knowledge and ability. Any translator or translation company may "certify" a translation.

A translator does not need to be "certified" in order to provide a "certified translation."

ATA Certification

ATA established a certification exam in 1973 to recognize translators with the skills, knowledge, and abilities needed to provide professional translation. The exam is an opportunity for individuals to demonstrate their competence.

ATA's certification exam is currently offered in 29 language combinations

Are translators without ATA certification "bad"?

No. There are several reasons why a translator might not be certified. In some cases, there is no certification exam available in the individual's language combination. It's also possible that an individual who is well-established in the industry no longer feels the need to prove his or her ability to translate professionally. And finally, clients in countries outside of the U.S. may place less importance on ATA certification. For translators working in these countries, there is no business advantage to becoming ATA-certified.

Does ATA certify interpreters, too?

No. ATA's exam only certifies translators.

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