What is an interpreter’s role in an interview?

When a person who is involved in the immigration process goes in for an interview with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, they may require the services of an interpreter. It is important for the interviewee to be able to understand everything that is going on in the interview but in many situations, they do not fluently speak or understand English so the process becomes complicated. An interpreter has many roles and it is important that they are qualified to fulfill their duties in an interview that has such a high impact on the interviewee’s life.

In order to qualify as an interpreter, you must show your fluency in both English and in the language that you are interpreting for the person attending an immigration interview. One of the most important roles that an interpreter is responsible for is that they must use only the exact words from the interviewee and the USCIS officer. They must not paraphrase, use different wording, or provide any opinions or commentary to either party. Another important factor is that if there is no direct translation from English to the language, the interpreter must inform the USCIS officer that they will have to use other terminology and ensure that they can accurately inform the interviewee of what they truly meant. It is important that the interpreter does not input their opinion or any sort of bias at any time throughout the interview.

An interpreter can be disqualified if they fail to meet the core qualifications, if the interviewee seems confused throughout the interview, and if the officer suspects that the interpreter is changing answers or coaching the interviewee throughout the interview. If you have questions regarding the USCIS’s change in interpreter rules, contact us today.

John Sesini is an experienced immigration attorney with offices in Green Bay and Milwaukee Wisconsin. If you have any questions regarding these matters, please contact the Sesini Law Group, S.C. and obtain your initial consultation.

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