4 Documents You Didn't Know Needed Certified Translation When Moving Abroad - Broke in London

4 Documents You Didn’t Know Needed Certified Translation When Moving Abroad

Guest post by Anna Nilsen

If you’re moving abroad, the paperwork involved is often a sticking point – and bureaucracy in the UK is just as much of a hurdle to relocating to London as it is if you’re heading in the opposite direction.

This is doubly relevant in the case that your documents are in a foreign language which isn’t native to your new homeland. In this case, you may find that certified translation is necessary to get the green light.

A certified translation is essentially a recognised, accredited and standardised service that guarantees a certain level of accuracy in the end result – and it’s this accuracy and reliability which is of course the cornerstone of emigration.

So with all that in mind, here are a few documents that may need certified translation, but which you might not have considered.

Tax Documents

Let’s take the example of someone who’s upping sticks and heading to live in London from another part of the planet. To find work you’ll not only need the right visa and permits, as well as any relevant qualifications for the role itself – but you’ll also have to get your tax affairs in order.

At the moment, the authorities in the UK will accept any documentation that is written either in English or Welsh, for obvious reasons. Anything penned in a different tongue will have to be translated by a professional. And if you need to prove your earnings and report any income you received overseas prior to your arrival, the properly anglicized paperwork will need to be sourced.

While the digitisation of accounting and tax, such as through the Making Tax Digital scheme, has smoothed out a lot of the complexities in this context, there’s still the lingering issue of ensuring proper comprehension of documentation is possible in your new nation.

This is as much about eliminating cross-border money laundering as anything else, but it does mean that paying for translation services as an average emigrant is a must.

Driver’s License

It may seem strange to think that something as simple as a driver’s license needs to be translated by a certified pro to ensure it’s all kosher when you move abroad, but even the briefest of documents require this in the case that they apply to something as significant as sharing the roads with millions of others.

Again, in the UK, you can get your papers translated fast ahead of moving to London, as a certified copy written in English or Welsh is a minimum requirement for using an overseas license to drive on British roads.

Of course if the issuing body in your home country offers English translations of driving documentation already, then this will suffice. But it’s better to be safe than sorry, so double check everything is in place before you start your journey.

Degree Certificates & Qualifications

There are recognised relationships across borders between governments and educational bodies which mean that any claims you make about your educational background and professional qualifications can usually be checked out quickly and easily.

However, there’s still an obligation on your part to present certified translations of documents like degree certificates, whether you’re applying for work in a related field or, in the example of moving to London, looking to become a naturalized UK citizen further down the line.

Just because you know that your degree is legit and you can even translate it well enough yourself, that isn’t enough to satisfy most authorities in other regions.

So even if you do not need a certified translation of your degree immediately, you should still think about getting one prepped by a pro before you move, just to prevent any roadblocks in the future.

Birth Certificate

This is a less commonly required piece of paperwork for most overseas moves, but one which will nevertheless be subjected to scrutiny in some scenarios, meaning a certified translation of your birth certificate could come in handy.

So for people who want to become permanently resident in the UK, and who were born in a nation that does not have English as its official language, a translated birth certificate that’s verified and notarized by experts will be your ticket to a stress-free experience. Coupled with other stress-relieving activities, you’ll be flying high rather than wracked with doubt.

Obviously this document doesn’t take long to translate, as it tends to be very brief. But even so, you’ll have less to worry about if this is in your folder of documents when heading into the next chapter of your life.

The Bottom Line

Given how simple and inexpensive it is to get documents translated by a certified professional, there’s little reason to put off this part of your planning for a major move. Even if you’re pushed for time, you can get paperwork like this dealt with swiftly, and focus your attention on other aspects of emigrating.