Translation of judgments, decisions and other court rulings from Polish into English or from English into Polish

Translating various court rulings, including judgments, injunctions orders or decisions, is one of the typical tasks faced by a sworn translator. Although certain kinds of rulings are to some extent repetitive, translation of a judgment or any other court decision is not as routine as it might seem and requires detail-orientation, precision and knowledge of extensive legal terminology.

A variety of translated judgments and court decisions

Court rulings differ in different kinds of cases (and courts) in which they are issued (criminal, civil, labour, administrative, etc.). There are also various matters addressed in the decisions (i.e. what issue/dispute the court resolved). Taking into account the technical aspects, court rulings may be very verbose, containing long statements of reasons, and as short as just one or a few sentences. The rulings of Polish courts may be different from each other in many respects, and an even greater wealth of forms and kinds of content can be found in common law countries, where the form and wording of court decisions are influenced not only by a different judicial system but also by a distinct conceptual framework and legal philosophy.

How important is a good translation of a court ruling (and why)?

It is important to be aware of the significance of court decisions and the purpose for which they are translated. In their judgments and decisions, courts settle cases submitted to them for examination, make decisions on procedural issues or establish facts. There are also temporary decisions (e.g, a Temporary Restraining Order – TRO) and purely procedural ones, which address issues in the course of pending proceedings and do not settle the matter as to its substance. In their rulings, courts apply general and abstract legal norms contained in normative acts (and, in common law systems, also arising from case law) in the context of a given case and in relation to specific persons. In this way, they shape the legal situation.

In the light of the above, it can be noted that a person who uses the translation of a court decision wishes to derive certain legal consequences from this decision abroad or to prove, outside his or her home country, the existence of a specific legal situation. That is why it is so important to correctly convey the content of a judgment, order or decision in the translation. It is up to the translator to reflect what the court stated and how it shaped the legal situation in a foreign language.

Translation of judgments and court orders – which rulings are often translated into Polish / English

Some of the rulings that are often translated are those in family matters, including divorce decrees or decisions regarding contact with a child (e.g. the British Child Arrangements and Specific Issue Order). Another common type of rulings includes decisions issued in bankruptcy proceedings (but they are not always court decisions – in the UK, the bankruptcy of a natural person is decided by the Adjudicator, who is an official of the Insolvency Service, i.e. the local insolvency agency). Such rulings are important for the creditors of the bankrupt debtor in other countries. The above are only few examples of the more frequently translated court documents, whereas the variety of courts and cases is so great that the translator, in the face of the growing pace of international commercial and legal transactions, must be prepared for new and unusual documents.

Translation of a court ruling – ordinary or certified?

Due to the significance and sensitive nature of judgments, clients usually seek a certified translation prepared by a sworn translator. Such a translation is certified to be consistent with the content of the source document. This is crucial for the recipient of the translation, to whom the reliability of the translated document must be demonstrated. A sworn translator is legally authorised to prepare certified translations. They are also obliged to fulfil a range of obligations arising from the Act on the Profession of a Sworn Translator (more on this can be found here). If a court decision is to be used by the client for information purposes only, there is no strict need to have a certified translation prepared – although it is undoubtedly necessary to commission the translation to a competent person with extensive knowledge of legal issues and legal translation.

Translation of a judgment, order, decision, injunction and other rulings into Polish or English – EngLaw’s support

At EngLaw, I offer professional translation services of court rulings. Our range of services includes translation of all kinds of Polish and English-language judgments, orders, decrees and injunctions (from Polish to English and from English to Polish). This includes standard and certified translations. Translations are performed by a sworn translator (entered into the official register kept by the Minister of Justice) with legal and linguistic education, holding a TOLES Advanced legal language certificate and demonstrating extensive experience in the translation of court documents. The translations contain all the elements required under Polish law. Before being delivered to the client, the documents are thoroughly and repeatedly verified, which allows us to ensure the highest subject-matter and linguistic quality. Translations are offered locally in Ruda Śląska, Mikołów, Zabrze, Gliwice, Katowice and the Silesian region, as well as online/remotely throughout Poland and abroad (it is possible to get hard-copy translations by post/get scans by e-mail or obtain translations with an electronic signature).

Feel free to use our professional certified and ordinary translation services.

Sworn translator of the English language: Ruda Śląska Halemba

Sworn translator of the English language: Gliwice, Katowice, Mikołów, Zabrze and the Upper-Silesian region

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