Published on May 7, 2019

by Marcos Dinnerstein

Summary: Certified translations for USCIS are required for foreign language documents supporting citizenship or naturalization applications. What documents are required? What should you pay attention to?

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is that part of the federal government that has jurisdiction over citizenship and immigration issues.  

1. What is a certificate of translation?
A formal statement in which a translator shows that they have accurately translated a foreign-language document into English. Any foreign language document must be accompanied by a full English translation that the translator has certified as complete and correct, and by the translator's certification that they are competent to translate the foreign language into English.

2. Who needs this?
Anyone who is immigrating to the United States of America (USA) or applying for naturalization.

3. What documents need to be certified?
Any and all documents submitted to support an application or petition are required to also have an English translation. This translation must be accompanied by a certification from the translator that attests the translation is both complete, accurate and that the translator is competent. Examples include birth certificates, marriage certificates, college transcripts, and police records.

And it’s important to know what information the USCIS  requires in a document. In some cases where the original document is lengthy countries will issue an ‘extract’ version of the document. These ‘extract’ documents will be accepted only if they contain the required information and if they were produced by an authorized official. (the “keeper of record”)

4. Do all translators offer this service?
No, not all translation services provide this service. Be sure that this service is offered before you engage with any translation service. MotaWord will usually return your certified translation within hours of being submitted. Read more about MotaWord’s USCIS certified translations here. or watch our Video: MotaWord Certified Translation

5. When am I required to have certified translations?
There are several scenarios in which you’ll need your non-English documents to have certified translations. Those include:
  • Legal proceedings such as trials or hearings
  • Immigration applications
  • College applications
  • Corporate and Business documentation
    • Documents might include, financial reports, contracts, patent filings. Additionally, businesses hiring a new employee may require: medical records, bank statements, passports, and visas
Here is one of the main reasons why you should choose MotaWord to handle your certified translations for USCIS. The largest immigration platform in the United States does and we are proud of our work with them. You can read more about how MotaWord provides USCIS ready translation service to Envoy Global every day, saving time, money and hassle to their clients here: https://www.motaword.com/cases/certified-translations-envoy

Useful Resources

How do I apply for U.S. citizenship? (PDF)
USCIS Resources in Other Languages