Certified or Notarized? Many people would have this question when they need to have their documents translated. Depending on what purposes you are submitting your translation for, you may need one or the other. To know which one is the right one for you, let’s start from what is certification and what is notarization.
If the translation is certified, it indicates that the translator has obtained translation certification granted from an accredited institution. In the U.S., most certified translators obtain their certification from American Translator Association, which is one of the industry’s most recognized credentials. To get the credential, translators need to register and pass the ATA Certification Exam, which is not easy and requires them to demonstrate high proficiency in a specific language pair. Once they pass the exam, the certification would serve as the evidence that they have professional competence in the language pair.
On the other hand, notarization doesn’t require the translators to complete an exam or finish any coursework. It indicates that the document complies with the official practice. In order for the document to be notarized, the translators need to swear an oath to the accuracy and sign an affidavit on the presence of a notary public.
The following table specifies generally which types of documents may need certified translation and what types may need notarized translation:
It’s noticeable that although many legal documents need not be notarized, some government bodies do require the original signatures and notarization with the translation. It’s always good to check the specific instruction or ask relevant personnel before you have your documents translated.
At Alliance Business Solutions, both the certified and the notarized translations contain our company and translator certification. With that being said, even notarization itself doesn’t control for the quality of the translation, our notarized documents are also completed by certified translators, so you will never worry about the quality of the works. If you have any question regarding translating your documents, please let us know.