insights

Certified translations: what are they?

Certified translations are important for when you need to submit documents for official purposes. Learn everything you need to know about these services.


When you need a document translated for official purposes, you need more than just a regular ol' translation. You need a certified translation. But what exactly is a certified translation? Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about these important documents.

What is a certified translation?

As the world becomes more globalized, there is an increasing need for certified translations of official documents. Certified translations are those that have been done by a professional translator and bear their signature and stamp as evidence of their accuracy.

These types of translation services are often required by government agencies, embassies, or schools when documents in another language must be submitted.

While the situation is different depending on each country, there are generally two different types of certification that a translator can provide: notarized and sworn.

  • Notarized certifications simply mean that the document has been signed in front of a notary public who can then verify its authenticity.
  • Sworn certifications require the translator to take an oath before a witness (usually another licensed translator) affirming that the translation is true to the best of their knowledge.

In many cases, both types of certification will be accepted but it’s always best to check with the specific requirements beforehand. Ultimately, getting your documents translated by a certified translation service offers greater peace of mind knowing that they will meet all requirements while also being accurate and stringently reviewed.

How to get a certified translation in the EU?

There is a misconception that there is an EU-wide certification procedure for translations. The reality is that each EU country has its requirements and processes in place.

To get your documents certified, you will need to contact a translation company or individual translator who is registered with the appropriate regulating body in your target country. The regulating bodies usually publish a list of approved certified translators on their website, however, make sure that the version is up-to-date and that you are not receiving an outdated list.

These translation agencies typically have a list of qualified translators on their websites that you can choose from. Once you’ve selected a translator, they will be able to provide you with an official quote and begin working on your document once everything has been finalized.

How to get a certified translation in the USA?

In contrast to other countries, the United States does not have a centralized system for certified translations. While this might seem confusing at first, it simply means that there are many different ways to get your documents certified depending on which state you are in and what type of document you need to be translated.

One way to get your documents certified is by working with a professional translation agency that can connect you with experienced translators who will be able to certify your documents according to the requirements of your specific state.

Alternatively, some states also allow Notaries Publics to certify translations but they must meet certain conditions such as being bilingual themselves or having previously worked as an interpreter. It’s always best to check with the relevant authorities beforehand so that you are clear on what is required.

What should I type into Google to find a certified translator?

If you’re ready to get started on your certified translation project, a good place to start is by searching for “certified translator + [your target language] + [your country]”. This will help you find agencies or translators who are registered in your area and who can provide the services that you need.

About Dilingual

This blog post is written by the translation experts at Dilingual, a website translation platform that makes it easy to translate your site into multiple languages.

Dilingual offers both automatic and professional human translations so you can choose the option that best suits your needs.

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