How To Translate Your Birth Certificate For USCIS

Translate Your Birth Certificate For USCIS

It can feel like such a hassle to go through the paperwork for immigration or other legal processes, doesn’t it? Your birth certificate is quite an important piece of document that will help you learn about your personal past. Things get tricky when you need to send it to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and it’s not in English. That’s where approved translation comes in handy!

Whether you’re immigrating, applying for a visa, or seeking naturalization, the USCIS demands translated copies of vital documents, including your birth certificate. This document, a testament to your identity, requires linguistic wizards – professional translators – to work their magic and transform it into an approved English version.

You should wait before you try to use Google Translate on your own. The USCIS has strict rules, and your language skills or tools that translate text automatically won’t be enough to get you through them. Let’s take a look at the interesting process of translating your birth certificate for USCIS so that your trip goes as smoothly as possible.

What is a Birth Certificate?

Your birth certificate is more than a piece of paper – it’s an official record showcasing the details of your entry into the world. From your name and birthdate to the place where it all happened, this document is your go-to proof of identity. While its content might vary by country, it generally includes these key details.

In some cases, if you require a birth certificate for official use in a country where a different language is spoken, you may also need to have it translated. This translation should be done by a certified translator or translation service recognized by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) in Australia. NAATI is responsible for setting and maintaining standards for the translating and interpreting profession in Australia. So, after obtaining your birth certificate, if translation is necessary, ensure that it is completed by a NAATI-certified professional to ensure its validity and acceptance in official contexts.

When to Translate a Birth Certificate

You might find yourself in need of translating your birth certificate for various official situations. Whether it’s for a visa application, driver’s license, marriage registration, academic pursuits, or even banking applications – a translated birth certificate is often a requirement. USCIS may specifically ask for this translation in scenarios like child adoption applications, death certificate applications, baptism ceremonies, legal proceedings, or employment applications.

The USCIS requires these translations primarily for identification purposes. Ensuring your birth certificate is in English (the official language in the USA) helps officials comprehend its content accurately, meeting the standards set by USCIS Policy Manual Section 11.3.

How to Translate a Birth Certificate

Now that you’ve identified the need to translate your birth certificate, the next step is understanding how to go about it. While you may not be the one wielding the translator’s pen, knowing the process is crucial. Here’s your step-by-step guide:

  1. Organize Your Documents: Ensure your birth certificate has no errors – be it in spelling or grammar.
  2. Hire a Certified Translator: Opt for a certified or professional translator trusted for USCIS acceptance. Numerous online services are available for your choice.
  3. Verify Translator’s Credentials: Check the translator’s competence, experience, and track record. Choosing a reputable translation company gives you the materials needed for a background check.
  4. Request a Quote: Seek a quote from the translation company and securely upload your documents in various formats (PDF, JPEG, Doc.x, etc.).
  5. Review the Translation: In 48 hours or less, your translation should be ready. Cross-check it with the original and USCIS requirements for potential changes.
  6. Approve and Download: If satisfied, approve the order and download the translation, or opt for a printed copy mailed to your address.

What is a Certified Translation?

In the world of international documents, a certified translation carries significant weight. It’s a translation done by a translator affiliated with an accredited association, accompanied by the translator’s stamp and seal. This stamp displays their membership number, serving as a recognizable mark. The translator attaches a certification statement affirming the translation’s accuracy, and signs it with the date and venue.

USCIS Translation Requirements

Beyond USCIS’ basic translation requirement, additional expectations exist when submitting a translated document:

  1. All foreign documents must be translated into English by a professional translator.
  2. The translation must be typed, not hand-written or digital.
  3. It must be an exact match with the original document.
  4. The translation must be certified, typed on the translator’s official letterhead, and include a certification statement.

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Following these requirements ensures a smooth process!

Must-Have Tips for Translating a Birth Certificate for USCIS

Drawing from our experience with USCIS document translations, we’ve gathered some essential tips to accompany the standard requirements:

  1. Certified Translator: Only a certified translator or a competent notary proficient in both languages can translate documents for USCIS.
  2. Correct Original Document: Rectify any errors on the original document before translation. The translation must be an exact copy, including all stamps and signatures.
  3. No Assumptions in Translation: Translators cannot add anything not in the original, even if unclear. They must report illegible parts as such.
  4. No Expiry for Certified Translations: A certified translation remains valid unless specified otherwise by the receiving authority.

Final Note

If you need to translate your birth certificate for USCIS, you should hire a professional translator. The translator will need to be certified and have experience translating birth certificates. The translation must be typed and follow the USCIS’s formatting guidelines. The translator will also need to provide a certification statement that states that the translation is accurate.


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