Legal translation isn’t only for the courtroom – in fact, it’s crucial to every business operating in international markets. From complying with local laws to conveying your terms and conditions in a foreign language, legal translation factors into far more business activities than you might first realise when you expand into a new market.
Here are five times international brands need legal translation.
#1: Business laws in each market
The first thing you need to do before expanding into an overseas market is fully understand the legal environment and what your obligations are. This covers everything from consumer rights, advertising laws, employment laws, tax regulations and a wide range of other operational requirements.
It’s not only senior staff members who need to understand these legal requirements, either. Any staff with responsibilities in your overseas markets or employees hired in foreign countries also need to know their obligations and it’s your responsibility to provide the necessary documentation and training in their native language.
#2: Legal documents for employees
Speaking of employees, you’ll also need to make sure all legal documentation for them (passports, visas, tax details, etc.) are all translated into the necessary languages – both for your company’s use and local authorities in your overseas markets. The same thing goes for documentation that’s collected during their employment such as disciplinary records, accident reports, certifications and anything else with legal obligations.
#3: Translating T&Cs
Terms and conditions are important to any business, giving you a layer of legal protection against consumer claims. However, this only counts if you provide quality legal translation of your T&Cs, otherwise they could be invalidated if a consumer decides to take your business to court.
Aside from translating your existing T&Cs, you also need to make sure they are compliant with local laws and regulations. This is why it’s important to choose translators with legal expertise in your target markets, as well as the language skills necessary for providing quality legal translation.
#4: Trade contracts
Trade contracts need to be approved by courts in your target markets before you’ll be given a licence to trade in an overseas country. Procedures for this vary between different countries but you’ll need a reliable team of legal translators on your side, regardless of which foreign markets you move into. Once you’ve got your licence to operate overseas, you might also need to create and sign trade contracts with local businesses, if you source parts or sell to retailers, for example. Likewise, you may decide to outsource manufacturing or certain services to other countries where trade contracts would be required once again.
#5: Partnership deals
Partnership deals can be particularly useful for brands expanding into overseas markets. You can expand your business while getting local expertise on your side, which can make all the difference when it comes to operating in a foreign country. However, you need to make sure that any potential partnership deals meet the needs of your business and, once again, everything comes down to the contract you sign.
Make sure everyone knows where they stand and don’t accept anything but 100% accurate translations of every contract.
Expanding a business overseas is always an exciting process but it comes with a lot of legal prerequisites. You need to know exactly where you stand and what your obligations are – and the same thing goes for everyone who represents your brand in each country. So don’t make compromises when it comes to legal translation on the international stage.