Legal Language Services ranks South Carolina as a state with lightly regulated legal interpreting requirements.

Requirements for Certified Interpreters in South Carolina

South Carolina does not require certified interpreters for any legal proceeding. However, court systems in South Carolina periodically offer exams, both written and oral, for certification based on the guidelines of the Consortium for State Court Interpreter Certification.

The state of South Carolina also recognizes certified interpreters from states offering Consortium-based certification as well as federal certification.

South Carolina offers certification in following languages:

  • Arabic
  • Cantonese
  • French
  • Haitian Creole
  • Hmong
  • Korean
  • Laotian
  • Mandarin
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Somali
  • Spanish
  • Vietnamese

Classification of Interpreters in South Carolina

South Carolina classifies interpreters in the following two ways:

  • Certified Interpreter: An interpreter who has scored a minimum of 70 percent on an oral exam as well as a minimum of 80 percent on a written exam and who has also completed a two-day orientation seminar.
  • Otherwise Qualified Interpreter: An interpreter who has not achieved certification but has met minimum requirements to be approved by the court including passing the written examination and attending a two-day orientation seminar.

Common Languages Spoken in South Carolina

According to a recent American Community Survey, approximately 6.61% of the South Carolina population speaks a language other than English.

What’s more, more than 85% of the non-English speaking population in South Carolina speaks one of the following 10 languages:

  • Spanish
  • French
  • German
  • Tagalog
  • Vietnamese
  • Chinese*
  • Arabic
  • Russian
  • Korean
  • Greek

Other languages spoken in South Carolina include Portuguese, Japanese, Italian, Gujarathi, Hindi, Polish, Mon-Khmer/Cambodian, Mandarin, Telugu, Kr/Ibo/Yoruba, Ukrainian, Thai, Dutch, Hebrew, Laotian, Hmong, Hungarian and Persian.

*This table was created based on respondents’ written answers, the majority of whom wrote “Chinese” while others specified “Cantonese” or “Mandarin.”

Judicial Districts in South Carolina

There are 46 judicial districts in South Carolina that encompass the state’s 46 counties. However, certification requirements in South Carolina are statewide and remain consistent across all local jurisdictions.

Call Legal Language Services at 1-800-788-0450 to find South Carolina interpreters who meet state interpreting rules for courtroom trials, hearings, depositions, arbitrations and other legal proceedings.

Please Note

The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information about legal interpreting guidelines in South Carolina is believed to be accurate at the time of posting; however, Legal Language Services is not responsible for any errors or omissions.