Legal problems in an international environment

The world is becoming increasingly smaller, at least in a legal context.

International legal problems can and do arise, not only with the sale of goods but also regarding family law and inheritance. Even lawyers without an “international practice” may find themselves in a situation involving foreign law, whether through an Irish client’s problem abroad or a foreign client’s problem in Ireland. To add to the complexity of the matter, the client may or may not be “here” and accessible to the attorney.

A major issue with international matters is language. Different languages use different words to say the same thing, and sometimes the same words do not mean the same thing..

Many English words, phrases and clauses have meaning beyond that which is in a dictionary. There are even differences between dictionaries. Furthermore, there are differences between and among English-speaking countries.

British lawyers need to understand that a non-native English speaker may not correctly use a word.

Be very careful when using translation software for anything but general translation into English. If you do not speak the other language, be even more skeptical of this software.


If legal translation happens to be legally wrong, it can be a potential threat to the lawyers who make use of it.

Translation is an auxiliary means of making documents written in one language comprehensible in another language. When we refer particularly to legal translation services, it is subject to plenty of regulations, as this kind of translation is not simply words thrown together, but something within the field of law.

Therefore, it is of utmost importance to understand that one should not translate from a legal language into the ordinary words of the target language but into the legal terminology of the target language.

The growth in international trade has increased the demand for legal translation services. In this regard, while translating the documents that mostly contain contracts, understanding the local culture, the country's legal system combined with knowledge of common law and civil law, used throughout the world, is necessary

Each legal system has its own vocabulary. It is the translator's job to search for terms that often do no fully correspond to the meaning of the word in the source language, or which may not even exist in the target language. Nevertheless, using the appropriate word does not only depend on a good dictionary but also on translator's technical knowledge.

That is why Alphatrad London works with a large network of official translators worldwide. Some of Alphatrad's official translators are foreign lawyers registered with the bars in the corresponding country. Your legal translations will always be entrusted to professionals who have studied law or who have many years of experience in this field and are thus completely familiar with the terminology they use.


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