Translating Contracts with a Forum Selection Provision

American companies that are ready to start working with a foreign entity should include a forum jurisdiction clause in their contract. In cases of disputes they can always seek legal remedy in a court. If they have chosen to take their issues to a court in the United States they should make sure that the agreement is in the English language. The original document should be submitted to a translator who is capable of executing court-certified translations. Certified translations for courts are necessary for parties who are planning to take advantage of the legal system to settle a dispute. Foreigners and Americans who wish to work with non-English speaking parties should keep in mind that they need to present their documents in English if they choose to take a case to a local court.

Conducting business with a supplier or partner from a foreign country can be a strategic move. As long as things go smoothly, both sides can benefit from the relationship. However, disagreements and disputes can happen in professional relationships and sometimes the two sides cannot reconcile their differences especially if they are dealing with language barriers. In such cases they may seek justice through the legal system. Those who have worked with an experienced lawyer or have used a legal template usually have included a forum selection clause in their agreement. Those who have never conducted international business might not know that they must translate the document that they draft and present to the non-English speaking party. While they prepare to present their case in an American court they will learn that their documents must be in English. Therefore, it might be a great idea to translate the documents as soon as the final version is ready. In the state of California courts ask parties to attach their foreign language documents to their translations and the translator’s certification.

Businesses in the United States that believe they can benefit from collaborating with firms in foreign countries should consider how they will handle disputes that arise while they are engaged in a relationship. By writing a good contract and inserting a forum selection clause they can prevent problems. Should they decide to resolve an issue in an American court they should come prepared with the proper documents. This includes the court-certified translation of foreign-language documents along with supplementary documents in English. In the United States courts only take court-certified translations such that translated documents without the proper declaration will be rejected. CACFTI prepares certified translations for courts upon request. For more information about how you can have a contracted translated by a court-certified translator, please contact us.

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