Volume 33, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0924-1884
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9986
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes



The article reflects on the problem of L2 legal translation, paying specific attention to the role of L1 revision and its impact on the overall quality of the final product. Twenty non-native translations (Czech–French) of a legal text were subjected to a two-stage assessment procedure: First, by two native revisers without legal training (revision stage), and second, by two native experts (metarevision stage). In the revision stage, the average quality of the translations was rated between B (good) and C (borderline). During the metarevision stage, the experts identified a higher number or errors, especially in the domain of legal meaning. No less than 84% of the revisions made by the non-expert revisers were confirmed by the expert revisers, while the remaining cases were mostly under-revisions (12%), and, less frequently, over-revisions (4%). In situations where L2 translation is inevitable, L1 revision, even when carried out by professional revisers with little or no legal background, seems to be a viable option. However, all stakeholders should be aware of the risks associated with this practice, bearing in mind the specific nature of legal translation.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Adab, Beverly
    2005 “Translating into a Second Language: Can We, Should We?” InIn and Out of English: For Better, for Worse?, edited byGunilla Anderman and Margaret Rogers, 227–241. Buffalo: Multilingual Matters. 10.21832/9781853597893‑018
    https://doi.org/10.21832/9781853597893-018 [Google Scholar]
  2. Arthern, Peter J.
    1987 “Four Eyes Are Better than Two.” InTranslating and the Computer 8: A Profession on the Move, edited byCatriona Picken, 14–26. London: Aslib.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Biel, Łucja
    2017 “Quality in Institutional EU Translation: Parameters, Policies and Practices.” InQuality Aspects in Institutional Translation, edited byTomáš Svoboda, Łucja Biel, and Krzysztof Łoboda, 31–57. Berlin: Language Science Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Byrne, Jody
    2007 “Caveat Translator: Understanding the Legal Consequences of Errors in Professional Translation.” The Journal of Specialised Translation7: 2–24.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Campbell, Stuart
    1998Translation into the Second Language. New York: Longman.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Chodkiewicz, Marta
    2016 “What Types of Errors Do Undergraduate Students Make Depending on Directionality?” InTranslation and Meaning. New Series, Vol. 2, Pt. 2, edited byŁukasz Bogucki, Barbara Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, and Marcel Thelen, 191–208. Bern: Peter Lang.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Corness, Patrick
    1999 “Stylistic Aspects of Translation from Czech into English: Some Features of a Sample Non-literary Corpus.” Folia Translatologica7/1999: 11–83.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Duběda, Tomáš
    2018 “La traduction vers une langue étrangère: compétences, attitudes, contexte social [Translating into a foreign language: Competences, attitudes, social context].” Meta63 (2): 492–509. 10.7202/1055149ar
    https://doi.org/10.7202/1055149ar [Google Scholar]
  9. European Commission
    European Commission 2016 “Omnibus-15 – Translation services into EU languages 2016/S 139-25111.” AccessedMarch 21, 2019. https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/info/files/omnibus15_contract_award_notice_2016-ojs139-251117-en.pdf
  10. Experts and Interpreters Act, 36/1967
    Experts and Interpreters Act, 36/1967. AccessedMarch 21, 2019. https://www.zakonyprolidi.cz/cs/1967-36)
  11. Göpferich, Susanne, and Riitta Jääskeläinen
    2009 “Process Research into the Development of Translation Competence: Where Are We, Where Do We Need to Go?” Across Languages and Cultures10 (2): 169–191. 10.1556/Acr.10.2009.2.1
    https://doi.org/10.1556/Acr.10.2009.2.1 [Google Scholar]
  12. Guinchard, Serge, and Thierry Debard
    eds. 2017Lexique des termes juridiques 2017–2018 [Dictionary of legal terms 2017–2018], s.v. “compensation”. Paris: Dalloz.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Hurtado Albir, Amparo
    ed. 2017Researching Translation Competence by PACTE Group. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 10.1075/btl.127
    https://doi.org/10.1075/btl.127 [Google Scholar]
  14. IAPTI
    IAPTI 2015 “Translation into a Non-native Language.” AccessedMarch 27, 2019. https://www.iapti.org/files/surveys/2/IAPTI_non-native_report.pdf
  15. ISO (International Organization for Standardization)
    ISO (International Organization for Standardization) 2015 “Translation Services – Requirements for Translation Services. ISO 17100:2015.” AccessedMarch 21, 2019. www.iso.org/iso/catalogue_detail.htm?csnumber=59149
  16. Kelly, Dorothy, Anne Martin, Marie-Louise Nobs, Dolores Sanchez, and Catherine Way
    2003La direccionalidad en traducción e interpretación: perspectivas teóricas, profesionales y didácticas [Directionality in translation and interpreting: Theoretical, professional and didactical perspectives]. Granada: Atrio.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Künzli, Alexander
    2007 “Translation Revision: A Study of the Performance of Ten Professional Translators Revising a Legal Text.” InDoubts and Directions in Translation Studies: Selected Contributions from the EST Congress, Lisbon, edited byYves Gambier, Miriam Shlesinger, and Radegundis Stolze, 115–126. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 10.1075/btl.72.14kun
    https://doi.org/10.1075/btl.72.14kun [Google Scholar]
  18. Ličko, Roman
    2014Translation into English as a Foreign Language: A Slovak Survey. Banská Bystrica: Belianum.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Martin, Tim
    2007 “Managing Risks and Resources: A Down-to-earth View of Revision.” InRevision and Technical Translation, edited byLouise Brunette, special issue ofThe Journal of Specialised Translation8: 57–63.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Ministry of Justice, Czech Republic
    Ministry of Justice, Czech Republic. n.d. “Register of Experts and Interpreters.” AccessedMarch 21, 2019. datalot.justice.cz/justice/repznatl.nsf/$$SearchForm?OpenForm&Seq=1#_RefreshKW_select_5
  21. Mossop, Brian
    2007 “Empirical Studies of Revision: What We Know and Need to Know.” InRevision and Technical Translation, edited byLouise Brunette, special issue ofThe Journal of Specialised Translation8: 5–20.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. 2015/2020 “Readings on Revising and Editing in Eight Languages.” AccessedMarch 27, 2019. www.yorku.ca/brmossop/RevisionBiblio.htm
  23. Newmark, Peter
    1988A Textbook of Translation. Hertfordshire: Prentice-Hall.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. Pavlović, Nataša
    2007 “Directionality in Translation and Interpreting Practice: Report on a Questionnaire Survey in Croatia.” Forum5 (2): 79–99. 10.1075/forum.5.2.05pav
    https://doi.org/10.1075/forum.5.2.05pav [Google Scholar]
  25. Prieto Ramos, Fernando
    2015 “Quality Assurance in Legal Translation: Evaluating Process, Competence and Product in the Pursuit of Adequacy.” International Journal for the Semiotics of Law28: 11–30. 10.1007/s11196‑014‑9390‑9
    https://doi.org/10.1007/s11196-014-9390-9 [Google Scholar]
  26. Rayson, Paul, Xiaolan Xu, Jian Xiao, Anthony Wong, and Qi Yuan
    2008 “Quantitative Analysis of Translation Revision: Contrastive Corpus Research on Native English and Chinese Translationese.” Paper presented atXVIIIth FIT World Congress, Shanghai, China, August 2008.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Rey-Debove, Josette, and Alain Rey
    2012Le Petit Robert de la langue française [Le Petit Robert. Dictionary of French]. Electronic edition, s.v. “compenser”.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. Selinker, Larry
    1972 “Interlanguage.” International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching10 (3): 209–231.
    [Google Scholar]
  29. Svoboda, Tomáš
    2016Central European Translation Market Survey. AccessedMarch 21, 2019. www.jtpunion.org/K-profesi/Odborne/Pruzkum-prekladatelskeho-trhu-ve-stredni-Evrope-Ce
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Wagner, Emma
    2005 “Translation and/or Editing – The Way Forward?” InIn and Out of English: For Better, For Worse?, edited byGunilla Anderman and Margaret Rogers, 214–226. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters. 10.21832/9781853597893‑017
    https://doi.org/10.21832/9781853597893-017 [Google Scholar]
  31. Whyatt, Bogusława, and Tomasz Kościuczuk
    2013 “Translation into a Non-native Language: The Double Life of the Native-speakership Axiom.” InTranslation in an Age of Austerity, edited byVilemini Sosoni and Margaret Rogers, special issue ofmTm5: 60–79.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error