The Couch is a place to exchange ideas and brainstorm, not only for its contributors but also for our readers who engage in the ensuing discussions. Sometimes, the sudden loss of a partner can be challenging, and even though the solution may be clear from an...

I have been an interpretation and translation practitioner for fifteen years, and during this time I have wondered why judiciary interpreters must be sworn in before every assignment, sometimes even before the same judge, more than once a day. Most states that grant language-interpreter certification require...

A few decades ago, “language access” was not really a phrase. Litigants who did not speak English were frequently left in the dark as to their own judicial proceedings, and this carried severe consequences. The evolution of court interpreting as a profession has relied on the...

I was talking to a friend and colleague recently about all the in-person work we’re starting to get in court, both civil and criminal. She mentioned, in passing, that she had received a call to prepare a witness for trial. The conversation turned to the...

The Couch is a place to exchange ideas and brainstorm, not only for its contributors but also for our readers who engage in the ensuing discussions. Sometimes, even when everyone in the room has the best of intentions, role boundaries can get muddied, and then everyone...

“Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits recipients of federal financial assistance from discriminating based on national origin by, among other things, failing to provide meaningful access to individuals who are limited English proficient (LEP)” (lep.gov). In state courts, where Title VI...

THE FOLLOWING IS NOT YOUR TYPICAL DAY IN COURT.  What do you do when you are challenged? Is it professional of an interpreter to request a break? Dilemma in the courtroom! What would you have done? The following is an experience I had in a Superior Court in Georgia...

During my years of interpreting in many different areas, mostly in court and other legal settings, I have observed situations that seem, at the very least, inappropriate, unfair, and perhaps even illegal. One of the first and simplest examples I can give is an assignment I...

The Couch is a place to exchange ideas and brainstorm, not only for its contributors but also for our readers who engage in the ensuing discussions. Sometimes, without the remotest fault on interpreters’ part, a crowd can have its suspicions aroused against them...

The Couch is a place to exchange ideas and brainstorm, not only for its contributors but also for our readers who engage in the ensuing discussions. Interpreter ethics exist to keep the language professional from getting enmeshed into what can become very convoluted situations. But what...