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Regular or sworn translation?


Due to the free movement of goods and people as well as more frequent and closer international cooperation, Polish companies are investing more abroad. The number of international inspection bodies and business organizations is also growing. All those entities generate a massive amount of legal and/or financial documentation. Moreover, the conclusion of contracts between two companies from different countries often requires sworn translation of the documents.

Many customers may wonder whether they need a sworn translation or a regular translation. So what is the difference?

Sworn translation must be carried out by translators who are duly authorized and sworn in by the Ministry of Justice. Certified translation (another name for sworn translation) usually applies to documents with legal force or to be submitted to any state institution.


This includes the translation of:

  • vehicle documents,
  • safety data sheets,
  • sales contracts,
  • diplomas,
  • notarial deeds,
  • certificates.


It should be noted that the translation of such documents is often classified as specialist translation. If the material contains specialist vocabulary relating to law, finance or economics, it is recommended to contact a translation agency with experience in specialist translations. Sworn translation may apply to documents from any industry.


If you are uncertain whether your documents require sworn or regular translation, please consult a project manager or sales representative at a translation agency. They usually have extensive experience and can advise on a wide range of issues. However, we would always recommend that you determine the type of translation/interpreting wherever the document is to be submitted – e.g. at the relevant university or institution.


Who is allowed to perform sworn translation?


A regular translation may be done by anyone – as the translation profession is not regulated, it does not even require a university degree in language and literature. A sworn translation must be performed by a translator sworn in by the Ministry of Justice. The list of sworn translators is publicly available on the Ministry’s website.


Sworn translators are people of public trust who certify the correctness of their translation. Thus they accept the liability for the work they have done: third-party liability.


A sworn translation must always be stamped and signed by the translator; therefore, it is not possible to send it by e-mail. The stamp bears the name of the translator, the language in which they are qualified, and the number of the translator on the list of the Ministry of Justice. Sworn translators are also legally obliged to keep a record of their translations.


The method of delivery of a sworn translation is selected by the client (personal pickup, mail, courier). One page of a sworn translation is 1,125 characters including spaces.

Read our blog to learn more about the importance of
multilingual communication in global business