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South Carolina
JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT
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RULE 511
RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT FOR
COURT INTERPRETERS

PREAMBLE

Many persons who come before the courts are partially or completely excluded from full participation in the proceedings due to limited English proficiency (LEP) or a speech or hearing impairment. It is essential that this communication barrier be removed, as much as possible, so that these persons are placed in the same position as a similarly situated person for whom there is no such barrier. A non-English speaker should be able to understand just as much as an English speaker with the same level of education and intelligence.

As officers of the court, interpreters help assure that such persons may enjoy equal access to justice and that court proceedings and court support services function efficiently and effectively. Interpreters are highly skilled professionals who fulfill an essential role in the administration of justice. Anyone serving as a court interpreter should be required to understand and abide by the precepts set out in these Rules. Judges and attorneys should also become familiar with the Rules and expect conduct from interpreters that is consistent with them.

APPLICABILITY

These Rules shall guide and be binding upon all persons, agencies and organizations who administer, supervise use of, or deliver interpreting services to the judiciary.