Your Right to an Interpreter

If English is not your first language and you are worried about not being able to express yourself in English when you go to court, you should know that both the Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination prohibit national origin discrimination. As such, any U.S. agency that receives state or federal funds is obligated under the law to provide you with a free interpreter and translated materials if you need them.  In addition to courts, this law applies to schools, hospitals, police and fire departments, and even some nonprofit agencies. If one of those agencies refuses to give you an interpreter when you ask for one, this may be considered to be a violation of the law and a national origin discrimination.

If you need an interpreter, just ask for one. Note, however, that the interpreter’s job is to correctly interpret into English what you are saying in your native language, and to interpret into your native language what is being said to you in English. The interpreter cannot give you any advice and should not represent you, as his or her job is to simply serve as an interpreter (translator) to make sure that you understand what is being said.

About teperlaw

I am an attorney practicing family law, immigration and wills and estate planning. You can find out more about me and my firm by visiting my website at: 106 W. Franklin Ave. Pennington, NJ 08534 (609) 737-3030
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One Response to Your Right to an Interpreter

  1. So if you need Polish interpreter I’m ready to help!!!

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