Translation and Certification of Documents

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) usually requires that translated copies of vital statistics records, such as birth and marriage certificates from overseas countries, be included with most of the applications which handle immigration applicants and those that are seeking naturalization. For immigration purposes this means translating all these important documents into English. Most translation businesses provide Translation And Certification Of Documents as a combined deal, because the USCIS won’t accept translations of vital statistics documents without a certification from the translator.

If you are unfortunate to be in a situation where your vital statistics records like birth certificates or marriage certificates from your native country have gone missing and are no longer available the webpage for the Department of State reciprocity provides useful information about the ways to obtain a new document. You choose your country from the list and go to the link that says “Jump to Country Documents.” This will provide you with the information you require.

Once you have located the documents you will need to send to the USCIS you will need to send certified translations as well. You can’t just send the documents in your own language as they will be rejected immediately. You will need to choose a competent translator in your language pair who is prepared to certify that the translation is accurate. This is quite a responsibility for any translator as if the translation is rejected this limits the translators chance of getting further work. The Translation And Certification Of Documents needs to be out into a certain format which is as follows:

  • the certifier’s name,
  • the certifier’s signature,
  • address
  • date of certification


Example of a certification by a translator

I [type out name], certify that I am fluent in English and the (language name) ________ and that the attached document is an accurate translation of the source document attached which is named ______________________________.



Type Your Name___________________________

Address __________________________________

Only if you are asked to do so should you send the original document with any application or a petition. It’s quite usual to send an ordinary clear readable photocopy.

Any document which has any amount of foreign language written in it which is to be submitted to the USCIS must include a Translation And Certification Of Documents. Failure to do this could result in a delay or rejection of your application which means you could lose your job opportunity. The USCIS doesn’t require that the translator has any qualifications in translating but the translator can’t be the applicant or his or her spouse. Even if you have equal competency in your language and English you are still not permitted to undertake any translations of documents that are going to find themselves in the hands of the USCIS. You need to find a translator who will guarantee that his or her translation will be accepted by the USCIS.