A patent is both a technical and a legal document: It is an agreement between an inventor and an authority defining the parties’ reciprocal rights and obligations an inventor and an authority defining the parties’ reciprocal rights and obligations with regard to a particular new area of knowledge called an invention.
Patent translation is arguably more precise and complicated than other legal translation services that are more general in their nature, owing to the complexity involved in the patent process. The drastic rate at which businesses are spreading all over the globe today has made the demand for translation services at an all-time high. No doubt there are many translation agencies you can choose from, but it is extremely important you assess with diligence their expertise, quality of service, reputation, experience and rates to make the perfect choice. Failure to make the best choice of translation service provider can result in devastating financial and legal repercussions for your business, this is due to the precise nature of patent laws and because these laws can vary from one country to another this leaves no room for even the slightest omission.
In industry reputation, time of delivery and finally cost are three vital factors you should look out for while searching for the ideal translation company for your business. Ensure that this is the kind of work they have undertaken before and the specific translator who will be assigned to your task has a suitable CV. All translation companies should be able to provide you with this information on request.
Requirements for Patent Translations
1. Accuracy - It goes without saying but translations of patents must simply be 100% accurate. Translators must pay maximum attention to each and every word when translating the patent documents, so as to avoid altering the original meaning of the text while ensuring and technical language is accurately translated. Also vitally important, is proofreading of the documents by a second linguist to ensure translations are error-free. Even a single punctuation mark, word or comma can potentially alter the entire meaning of a patent’s legitimacy.
2. Knowledge of the patent terminology - The translations of patents should be handled by a reputable translation company or by a renowned multilingual patent attorney to ensure high quality translation. This is due to the required knowledge of the patent terminology and first-hand experience in handling the patent process which can be complex.
3. Confidentiality - This is a key aspect that you should expect from your translation service provider. Translation service providers should be used to dealing with sensitive data and should have processes in place to ensure it is secure. The importance of absolute privacy or confidentiality can't be overemphasized. It would be perfectly acceptable to expect a translation service provider to sign a non-disclosure agreement and also to be able to provide details on data security and document storage.