When a prospective immigrant sends in relevant documentation in support of his or her immigrant application to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), and the original documents are not written in English, translations of all these documents must be included with the application and be certified so as to comply with the USCIS certified translation services strict requirements.
You cannot translate the documents yourself, but you must hire a competent translator in both languages to do the job on your behalf. It is preferable that the translator can prove his or her competence formerly by being approved by the American Translation Association (ATA). This is not a requirement from the USCIS certified translation services but it will give you confidence that the translation is correct and will not be rejected by the USCIS when you send it with your visa application.
The translator has to be able to prove fluency in both English as well as the native language to be translated. Each translated document whether it is a birth certificate, marriage certificate or translations or degrees or diplomas must be accompanied by a signed statement by the translator stating that he or she is competent to do the job and the translation provided is accurate; Any incomplete translations will be rejected and be returned to the applicant to get adjusted. Sometimes, a translator may overlook minor detail on a document. This is not acceptable by USCIS certified translation services and will be returned to the applicant for a full translation.
The best advice is to take some time looking for the best translator in your language who has proven experience with translating documents for the USCIS and keeps current with any changes in requirements. This will save you time if you hire USCIS certified translation services.