The only way to ensure a precise translation is to check it point by point, inconsistency clause clause. In an ideal situation, a translation is carried out by a lawyer (either within your firm or by a contract lawyer hired, abroad or on the spot) who can provide legal advice on the correct language to use in translation. In situations where this is not possible, translation companies with experience in developing legal documents and explaining the implications should be used in the choice of words, so that the lawyer who does not speak the foreign language will be able to make decisions about the choice of words. If the lawyer does not have the foreign language capability and the client does not wish to hire an additional lawyer to confirm the translation, the client should be notified of the potential for inappropriate translation and the impact on the terms of the contract. The problem of applicability. It is difficult to impose decisions obtained in U.S. courts abroad. Therefore, if you work with multilingual contracts, you need to consider where a dispute is most likely to be sought when you have to enforce it. What are the provisions of the treaty on dispute resolution, jurisdiction and forum choice? Is there a provision for international arbitration? Have you thought about whether your contractual partner exists only in his or her country of origin, which means that your best chance of abstaining and/or compensating for an offence is to use the local justice system? Parties and their advisors should consider the time and resources (including legal fees) spent developing contracts. No lawyer would dream of telling a client that the exact language used in a contract “doesn`t matter.” But if the translations offered in multilingual contracts are not verified, that is exactly what lawyers do.
The parties often pursue each other over the meaning of a single word in a contract. Contractual disputes are challenged on appeal where there is a clear conflict between two words, two sentences or two paragraphs in a contract. The lack of precision in a translation invites problems when there is no need. Why is this necessary? The contractual law of most nations follows the well-known principle that there must be a meeting of minds to conclude a binding treaty. If not, there is no contract. Each foreign nation has different rules of evidence as to what is allowed in the evidence, if they prove what the parties understood they received for the benefit of the good deal. Many laws allow the use of parol evidence.