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Certified Translation, Sworn Translation and Notarised Translation

What is the difference between them?


It is a translation of a document, usually a birth or marriage certificate, intended for official use, such as a visa. A translation from Portuguese into English can be certified by any qualified translator.
In the UK, there isn’t a formal route for certification. However many organisations, such as the Home Office expect the translator to be a full member of the CiOL or the ITI.
Although the translator’s membership is not mentioned by the Home Office website, many translations end up being rejected if they don’t include the following information:

• That it’s a ‘true and accurate translation of the original document’
• The date of the translation
• The full name and contact details of the translator or a representative of the translation company

Making sure that the translator is a member of a professional association is key to make sure you are commissioning the right translation. So always look for a Portuguese into English translator who is qualified and a member of a professional association.


There is no register of Brazilian Portuguese Sworn Translators in the UK, as there is no recognised official body that grants authorisation to legalise or certify.

In Brazil, however, a Brazilian Sworn Translator must provide translations for official purposes. WordlyWise works with trusted Sworn Translators in Brazil and can provide this service.

A Sworn Translator is a member of an official body that holds a list of authorised professionals. In Brazil, this is called “Junta Comercial”.

If you are doing business in Brazil and need a Sworn Translator, we can provide this service or recommend a trusted partner.


Certain consulates and other organisations require translations not only to be certified, but also notarised.
This is the case of the Portuguese Consulate. The translation is signed in front of a Notary Public as being “true to the original”. The notary public adds their signature and official seal to prove it has been witnessed.
It is rare to find a Portuguese to English translator who provides both services. Usually they use local notaries and charge for the notarisation separately. A competent translator should be able to give guidance to their clients.

Do I need a certified translation?

If you need to submit a visa application to the Home Office or if you are applying to study at UK university and need to submit Brazilian documents, then you may need a certified translation.
If the organisation requires a birth certificate or marriage certificate and that document is in European Portuguese, then you may also need a translation.
In order to avoid disappointments, make the necessary enquiries with the relevant organisation first and make sure what type of translation it is required.

Need a certified translation between English and Portuguese?

WordlyWise provides certified translations from Portuguese into English. They are accepted by official bodies, such as the Home Office, in the UK.
Send us the document via email to receive a quote.
The turnaround is quick and collection is available for urgent cases in Central London.
Contact us by phone or fill out our contact form. Thank you!

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