Court judgements

The translation of judgements, decisions and orders issued by the courts is considered by many legal translators to be the pinnacle of their art. Judgements handed down by Swiss courts are often admirably terse, so that the substantive reasoning may be extremely dense. The translation of such texts requires a thorough knowledge of the law on the part of the translator. In addition, when translating Federal Supreme Court decisions from German to French, for example, it is not sufficient to simply identify the French equivalent of the specific legal concepts found in the German: it is also necessary to consult the body of Federal Supreme Court decisions published in French in order to determine how those terms are customarily employed by the Court in similar contexts in order to capture the correct phraseology.

When translating Federal Supreme Court decisions into English, detailed comparative legal research is often required in order to render into well-grounded and comprehensible legal English concepts of Swiss law that are unknown to common law jurisdictions. We have many years of experience in this area and gladly share the knowledge we have acquired with our clients through the publication of our Legal English Course, our Synoptic Table of Swiss Law, and our “Legal English Shots” – monthly notes on individual legal English expressions, distributed on request by e-mail.