The legal translation profession is facing challenges such as lack of regulatory body, monopoly and public recognition. It is also under threat from technologies such as machine translation and press coverage. Academics, as a source of knowledge, are important for this profession. They can enhance practice, develop innovations, and impart theoretical and professional training. In particular, they can provide more information about the legal field. So, how can academics improve the capability of legal translators?
The translation adequacy strategy aims to respond to these challenges. It is based on the decision-making parameters pertaining to legal translation and identifies predictable criteria for quality assurance. The components of this strategy provide a common framework for problem-solving and competence assessment. They are based on different discursive and legal conditions, and are therefore useful for enhancing the ability of legal translators.
Legal translation has two basic functions – descriptive and prescriptive. Sometimes it combines both. The function of the document is dependent on the communicative situation, but in most cases, the target language has a legal effect. The nature of law is diverse and generally restricted to national borders. It is important for legal translators to find equivalents for culture-bound terms and concepts. Further, international and European law are growing rapidly, which means that they must consider the requirements of both cultures when translating.
The process of legal macro-contextualization is highly complex. There are three main parameters that must be considered: the source language. Then, there are the different genres and branches of law. These are interpreted by the translators in accordance with their own knowledge and research. They must understand the context of specialized texts. Moreover, they must make use of their own experience and knowledge in order to achieve better results.
Taxonomies for translation techniques and quality evaluation models are not effective without a legal translator‘s competence. However, these techniques cannot be effective without relevant competence. The proposed strategies should be used in tandem with legal accuracy. The process of contextualization must be appropriate for the target readers. These factors are important for the translator’s work. In order to enhance the quality of a legal text, the content of the document must be accurate and understandable.
Moreover, the legal translation process must ensure the equivalent impact on the target reader. Hence, a translator’s translation must respect stylistic conventions of the target legal culture. A legal translator is not just a bilingual typist. A translator is a text producer and must adhere to the uniform intent of the source document. In addition, fidelity must be maintained to the intended language in the target language.