Visa Applications and Certified Translations

If you are from outside the United Kingdom and wanting to visit, study or work in this country, then you will be aware that visa applications require a number of forms and procedures to be completed. If your documents are written in a language other than English, then one of those requirements will probably be certified translations.

Who needs a UK visa?

Simply put, the requirements can vary depending on where you are from and your reason for travelling. There is a wide range of visa types and the best place to check requirements is the UK government website. However, generally speaking, people from outside the UK who want to work or study in the country will need a visa.

Some visa applications ask you to supply official documents such as your birth certificate, marriage certificate, employment contract or bank statements. If they are written in a language other than English, then you will need to find a certified translator.

Why a certified translation?

Certified translations include the signature, stamp/seal of approval of a certified translator/certified translation agency, thereby giving the translation credibility. It is quite likely that translations that have not been certified will be rejected by the visa authorities.

Who can provide me with a certified translation?

The Home Office accepts translations provided by a UK-based translator who is a member of an official professional organisation such as the Institute of Translation & Interpreting (ITI) or the Chartered Institute of Linguists (CIOL). It also accepts translations by any translator who is a member of the Association of Translation Companies. As a certified Spanish-English translator (Qualified Member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting), I am able to provide you with certified translations for your visa application. I also provide a covering letter for the authorities containing my credentials.

What is the Home Office’s guidance for Certified Translations concerning Visa Applications?

The Home Office’s guidance states that if you need to certify a translation of a document that’s not written in English or Welsh, ask the translation company to confirm in writing on the translation:

  • If you submit a document that is not in English or Welsh, it must be accompanied by a full translation that can be verified by the Home Office. Each translation must contain:
  • confirmation from the translator that it is an accurate translation of the original document
  • the date of translation
  • the translator’s full name and signature
  • the translator’s contact details

If the requirements are unclear to you, it is essential to check with the requesting authority to ensure that your documentation will be accepted.

To find out more about certified translations for visa applications or get a quote, please send an email to or call me on 07738669373. You can also pop by my office in Newry on an appointment basis.



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