Updated: 17 April 2019|Legal Guidance

The right to an interpreter is an integral part of the right to a fair trial. It is a principle of English common law that the Defendant must be able to understand the charges made against them and be able to properly defend themselves. The right is also enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights.

Translation services are currently being provided within police stations and the Courts by ‘The Big Word’, who are contracted by the Ministry of Justice.  Sign language interpretation is provided by Clarion UK.

Interpreters working within the Criminal Justice System should be registered on the National Register of Public Service Interpreters (NRPSI). NRPSI are an independent, voluntary public interest body and their core role is to ensure that standards within the profession are maintained for the benefit of the public and interpreters.


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