November 2018

Sworn translations, everything you need to know

What is a sworn translation? Are legalised and apostille documents the same thing? What kinds of documents can be translated? Let’s clear things up, together.

Many people don’t know what a sworn translation is. They only learn when they find themselves in need of one. Others find the subject confusing. Let’s begin by answering the main questions, both general and more specific, about sworn translation.

What are sworn translations?

Let’s start with the definition of “sworn translation”.

As you can guess from the combination of the words “sworn” and “translation”, this is translation that has legal value in Italy. In other words, it is the transposing from one language to another of the contents of an official document, recognised by Italian law. This is also commonly called asseveration.

The sworn (or certified) translation, for example, could be a birth certificate translated from English to Italian. With this protocol, the document maintains its legal value in Italy as well.

Great. Hopefully the first question is resolved.

Do you need a sworn translation? Contact us!

firma per legalizzazione

Sworn translations: legalised or with apostille

If you need to have a document translated that is also valid internationally, then you need a service that goes beyond a sworn translation: legalisation or an apostille.

Let’s look at the difference between these two terms.

  • Legalisation. In general, this is the procedure for certifying the signatures placed on the documents or on the sworn translation affidavit. This can be done by affixing an apostille or, when this is not possible, in person at the consulate of the foreign country in Italy.
  • Apostille. This is a paper certification recognised by all nations adhering to the Hague Convention of 1961. It is affixed by the office of the Public Prosecutor. This gives legal value to the document and completes the legalisation procedure.

In the majority of cases, the apostille is sufficient for legalising a sworn translation that needs to be used outside of Italy.  For all other cases, you should contact the authorities in charge, located throughout the country.

Are you looking for an example of a document that might need a sworn translation? Keep reading.

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Documents that need a sworn translation

A sworn, or certified, translation is required for these types of documents:

  • birth, marriage or death certificates;
  • passports, identity documents;
  • qualifications (diplomas, university degrees, etc.);
  • administrative documents (driver’s license);
  • documents that attest medical expenses;
  • insurance appraisals;
  • notarial instruments (proxies, powers of attorney);
  • corporate documents (business profiles, statutes, balance sheets, etc.);
  • judicial documents (proceedings, sentences, appeals, etc.).

This listing includes the most commonly used documents; if you need to have other types of certificates translated, contact us using the form below. We’ll do our best to help.

Do you need a sworn translation? Contact us!

How is a sworn translation done?

Maybe you’d like to know how a sworn translation works and how it proceeds once the translation is complete. Here’s a general explanation.

To begin, it’s important to note that the entities involved in certification are the Court, the Justice of the Peace or a Notary before whom the translator takes an oath. The document holder does not have to be physically present.

The translator responsible for the translation goes to one of the offices indicated and swears that the translation is a completely true and correct translation of the original document. Then the translator signs the affidavit that is attached to the original document and the translation.

That’s how a sworn translation is legalised in Italy.

Who can do sworn translations?

The answer is simple: a professional translator, of legal age, with perfect knowledge of both the original and translated languages, as well as relative specific terminology.

traduttore professionista traduzioni giurate

Where are sworn translations done?

Remember that a sworn translation has legal value nationally, regardless of which Italian city the translator is in and where the bureaucratic procedure was completed.

For example, if this service is performed by a translator or translation agency in Verona, certified through the Court of Verona, you have the assurance of being able to use the official translated document anywhere in Italy.

Here at Studio 23 we have one priority: reassure our clients about confidentiality. In fact, we guarantee complete protection of the sensitive information we have access to during translations. You can trust us.

Speaking of translations, are you familiar with everything we can do? Take a look at our services.

What is the cost of a sworn translation?

Estimates for the total cost of a sworn translation vary based on the complexity of the original document and the language combinations required.

For a custom cost estimate, contact us directly with details of your requirements. We will assist you with competence and dependability throughout the procedure.

Do you need a sworn translation? Contact us!