Thursday, 7 October 2010

EU courts must offer interpreting and translation during proceedings
Oct 07 2010

EU courts must offer interpreting and translation during proceedings
The Council of the European Union has adopted rules that will make interpretation and translation in criminal proceedings compulsory, if these services are required.
An agreement has been reached with the European Parliament in first reading. Member states will now have to transpose the directive into national law. The directive is based on an initiative taken by 13 Member States (Belgium, Germany, Estonia, Spain, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Hungary, Austria, Portugal, Romania, Finland and Sweden).
The new directive will substantially enhance the rights for suspected and accused persons. According to the communiqué, under the terms of the directive "they will have the right to interpretation, meaning that a suspected or accused person who does not understand or speak the language of the criminal proceedings concerned will be provided without delay with interpretation during criminal proceedings before investigative and judicial authorities, including during police questioning, during all court hearings and during any necessary interim hearings".
Where necessary for the purpose of ensuring the fairness of the proceedings, interpretation will also be available for communication between the suspected or accused person and his legal counsel in direct connection with any questioning or hearing during the proceedings or with the lodging of an appeal or other procedural applications, such as for bail."

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