Court Interpreter Application Deadline Extended to February 16

For Media Release: January 25, 2010

The Hawaii State Judiciary is in need of language interpreters -- particularly those who can interpret in Chuukese, Ilokano, Spanish, Vietnamese, Korean, Marshallese, Japanese, Tagalog, Pohnpeian, Tongan, Samoan, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Laotian.  Interested persons are encouraged to apply by February 16 to participate in an upcoming two-day orientation workshop.  Certified sign language interpreters are also encouraged to apply.

Application forms may be downloaded from the Judiciary’s website at www.courts.state.hi.us/courtinterpreting or by calling 539-4860.  A $75 fee to cover the costs of the orientation program must accompany the application.

The original $120 registration fee was lowered to $75 thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Hawaii Women’s Legal Foundation and Hawaii Friends of Civic and Law-Related Education.

Requirements for certification as a court interpreter include acceptance of the application, successful completion of a two-day orientation workshop, achieving a passing score on a written English proficiency and court interpreter ethics exam, clearing a criminal background check and achieving a passing score on an oral exam in a non-English language.

The two-day orientation workshops will be held on:

Oahu: February 20-21
Kauai: February 24-25
Kona: March 3-4
Maui: March 9-10
Hilo: March 18-19

Court interpreters work on a freelance basis as independent contractors in criminal and certain civil cases when parties or witnesses are unable to hear, understand, speak or use English sufficiently.  Depending on their performance on written and oral exams, court interpreters are paid between $25 to $55 per hour with a two-hour minimum.

In FY 2009, the Judiciary paid $436,000 to provide qualified interpreters for parties and witnesses in 7,872 cases.

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Contact:  Marsha Kitagawa   539-4909

For more information, contact the public affairs office at 808-539-4909 or via email at pao@courts.state.hi.us.

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