Telephonic interpreting can be a boon to legal professionals in need of language services, but it sometimes presents difficulties and may not always be the right solution for your particular needs.
Telephonic interpreting is a useful tool for last-minute or emergency proceedings, or if you need to communicate with someone who speaks an uncommon language.
But for more common languages and prescheduled meetings and events, an on-site interpreter is almost always the best option.
When Telephonic Interpreting May Not Be the Best Choice
When you are deciding if telephonic interpreting is right for you, there are a couple of things to consider. You need to take non-verbal communication into account, as well as the gravity of the proceeding taking place.
For example, if you use telephonic interpreting services, the interpreter won’t be able to see a speaker’s gestures, movements or facial expressions.
Not being able to read these emotions can have a profound effect on the speaker’s meaning, and it could mean that the interpreter won’t be able to fully pick up on what the speaker is trying to communicate. This may be detrimental for important legal proceedings.
It goes without saying that accuracy is an important factor in all legal proceedings, but it is especially important for events like depositions and arbitrations. Telephonic interpreting can be used for these events if there are no interpreters in your area who speak the necessary language — and none can travel to your event in time — or if there is a last minute proceeding.
The sensitive and crucial nature of these events really requires in-person interpreters, or else inaccuracies may occur that could ruin cases for defendants who speak another language.
Telephonic Interpreting Better Serves Particular Languages & Situations
Telephonic interpreting is a great service when it is absolutely essential to communicate now with a client or witness who speaks another language.
However, telephonic interpreting should be limited to emergency situations and situations when it’s absolutely impossible to obtain the services of an in-person interpreter. For example, finding a Basque interpreter in Idaho could prove rather challenging.
The take away? Telephonic interpreting can provide the language access you require, but its limitations make it a better choice for initial client interviews and off-the-record meetings.
If you require in-person or over-the-phone interpretation services, contact Legal Language today.