Interpreters Unlimited Midatlantic



Frequently Asked Questions



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Q What is the difference between consecutive and simultaneous interpretation?

Consecutive and simultaneous are the two types of interpretation. Consecutive interpretation occurs when the interpretation is given in blocks of words or sentences. Simultaneous interpretation is where the interpretation is given at the same time a person is speaking the language to be interpreted. There are no long pauses as in a consecutive interpretation. Many times a simultaneous interpreter sits in a sound-proof booth to interpret in real time while listeners are wearing headphones. Both areas of interpretation require a highly trained and qualified interpreter. IU provides both of these services.


Q What is the difference between Interpretation & Translation?

An interpretation refers to the conversion of one spoken language into another. For a sign language interpreter, it is the conversion of a spoken language into Sign Language. A translation refers to converting written material from one language to another. Providing experienced interpretation and translation services require very different skills, some of which are not interchangeable. IU has language expert professionals qualified in both areas.


Q What makes Interpreters Unlimited different from the hundreds of other services I've found?

Unlike many other language agencies, we offer a wide range of language services that include in-person interpretation, over-the-phone interpretation, ASL interpreters, written document translation, and even medical translation. In 2012, Interpreters Unlimited was also named one of the Top 20 Largest Language Providers in the Country.


Q Is there a statutory or constitutional right to an interpreter?

Yes. Many laws have been passed that require an institution provide a certified interpreter or qualified interpreter i.e. in court hearings and in hospitals, just to name a few. US Code 1827 and California State Bill 853 are examples of legislation passed at both the state and federal level protecting the rights of those with limited English proficiency or are hearing impaired.


Q Why can't just anyone translate my documents?

Language translators require specific skills including editing, dialect, and subject matter expertise. It takes aptitude to understand the writer's intent and then translate that same equal intent for a Spanish to English translation or English to Spanish translation, for example. There are many people who can attempt to translate Spanish to English or vice versa. However, only a skilled professional translator can translate the correct tone and intent in a grammatically correct way.


Q Are those online translation tools accurate?

No, those programs are not accurate to say the least. These tools will translate what you type in, however, most of the time the context, syntax, and meaning are lost. So the translation does not make any sense. Basically, the program picks from lists of words programmed into them, randomly picking out a word that might have been intended. Accurate translation is not that simple. Don't risk relying on a free translation from these online translator tools; use a professional Spanish translation service or other language expert professionals.


Q Will your translation company sign a Non-Disclosure and Confidentiality Agreement?

Yes, we will. Confidentiality is essential to our clients. Our corporate translation company is open to signing a Non-Disclosure and Confidentiality Agreement of your choice before examining your English or foreign language documents.


Q What types of interpreters does Interpreters Unlimited offer?

IU only works with qualified interpreters. All of our language experts are carefully assessed using our 3-step assessment program. This program includes evaluation of proficiency, interpretation skills, technical skills, understanding of the ethics and practices of interpreting, certification (if applicable) and other required skills. Offering nationwide translation services since 1970 has made IU specialist in providing professional, accurate, and reliable interpreters.


Q How do you address privacy concerns and sensitive issues?

Interpreters Unlimited respects the privacy of protected health, educational records, and other sensitive information and understands the importance of keeping this information confidential and secure. IU recognizes the importance of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH), as it applies to our services. Therefore, we have developed a set of guidelines to ensure confidentiality of protected health information, educational records, and other sensitive information we may become privy to when providing our language services. Interpreters Unlimited has a zero tolerance policy for interpreters or translators who do not comply with these guidelines.


Q Are IU interpreters certified?

Some are. Currently there are no nationally recognized certification programs for interpreters. However some languages like American Sign Language have a certification program. ASL interpreters can go through the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, a non-profit organization to obtain their certification. Certified interpreters are required for very specialized appointments (usually legal in nature). IU provides both certified and non-certified interpreters where applicable.


Our Language Services

  Sign Language Interpretation,   Spanish Interpretation,   Document Translation,   In-Person Interpretation,   Telephone Interpretation,   Video Remote Interpretation,