Code of Ethics

  • Print

Recommendation of the Board of the Austrian Association of Certified Court Interpreters (ÖVGD) regarding compliance with the following Code of Ethics

I) General Provisions

  1. Certified Court interpreters (allgemein beeidete und gerichtlich zertifizierte Dolmetscher) shall perform their duties to the best of their knowledge and belief in an unbiased and impartial manner.
  2. Certified Court interpreters shall make sure to maintain and update their language and specific skills at a high level, as it corresponds to the requirements of the profession, in order to be able to perform their assignments conscientiously and responsibly.
  3. Certified Court interpreters shall observe confidentiality regarding professional matters. This commitment shall continue beyond the completion of an assignment.

II) Special Provisions

1) Contacts with authorities

Certified Court interpreters shall adopt an impeccable conduct in their contacts with authorities recruiting them for assignments. They shall, in particular, observe the following points:

  1. An assignment shall only be refused for serious reasons.
  2. As a matter of principle, assignments shall be performed in person. Assignments may be passed to third parties only in exceptional cases, with the approval of the contractor, and without any consideration.
  3. All deadlines shall be observed punctually. If this is not possible, in exceptional cases, excuses shall be presented and requests for extension of the deadline shall be submitted in due course.
  4. Fees shall be invoiced according to the provisions of the 1975 Austrian Fees Act, as published in Federal Law Gazette I 111/2007. Court interpreters shall be responsible for knowing these statutory provisions and applying them correctly.

2) Contacts with private contractors

Basically, the same principles shall be applied as to contacts with authorities, with the proviso that the acceptance of assignments may possibly also be guided by ethical principles (e.g. refusal to accept assignments on ethical, political or other grounds).

3) Contacts with fellow court interpreters

  1. The Code of Ethics requires court interpreters to behave in a friendly manner and a spirit of solidarity towards their colleagues.
  2. Any personal conduct shall not affect the reputation of the profession.
  3. Disputes shall be referred to the disciplinary bodies of the Association, which shall be given any necessary support and assistance.

4) Conduct towards the Association

  1. Certified Court interpreters shall comply with their obligations under the Association Bylaws.
  2. Certified Court interpreters shall refrain from any conduct or comments likely to affect the reputation of the Association in public.

5) Conduct in public

  1. The title "Sworn and Certified Court Interpreter"(allgemein beeideter und gerichtlich zertifizierter Dolmetscher) may only be used in connection with this activity, or whenever justified by it (in other words not for advertising purposes).
  2. The official seal must only be used to certify translations (and not as address stamp, etc.).
  3. Other (Austrian of foreign) titles may be used in connection with the title "Certified Court Interpreter" (allgemein beeideter und gerichtlich zertifizierter Dolmetscher) only if they have been obtained in compliance with valid Austrian statutory provisions.
  4. Certified Court interpreters shall refrain from any glaring advertising which may damage the reputation of the profession.
  5. Certified Court interpreters shall consider the standing of the courts and their profession in their attire and behavior.

The ÖVGD Board shall monitor compliance of the present Code of Ethics by its members. In case of serious violations thereof, the ÖVGD Board shall be responsible for imposing adequate sanctions upon members violating this principle.