Canadian multilingual legal glossary/Glossar kanadisches Rechtsenglisch

A comment by Cheryl Stephens (Plain Language Wizardry) under the last entry recommends a multilingual legal glossary at Vancouver Community College.

Unfortunately this has no German. It offers plain-language definitions of 5000 terms in Canadian law, translated into Chinese (traditional or simplified characters), Farsi, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

The project looks interesting, but it’s really designed for non-lawyers, including unaccredited court interpreters, in Canada. A translator would want a more complex definition, and a trained or experienced court interpreter would not need the help.

The glossary is an attempt to respond to an issue identified by the Law Courts Education Society of B.C. (LCES) and the Vancouver Community College Certificate Program in Court Interpreting (VCC) – that of a lack of consistency in the comprehension and use of legal terminology among unaccredited court interpreters working in the courts of British Columbia. This issue is particularly significant in areas outside the Lower Mainland, where accredited interpreters are virtually non-existent.

The limitations of the glossary are set out in detail: for example, it does not relate to the legal systems of the countries where the various languages are spoken.

The most interesting plain language resources for translators are ones that (reliably) explain and discuss legalese.

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