The German authorities require certified translations for certain types of documents, including those needed for starting up a business in Germany, for example commercial registry excerpts, company contracts and powers of attorney.
What is a “certified translation”?
When talking about certified translations, it is important to know that the term “certification” has a particular meaning in Germany when relating to translations, because a “sworn translators” system is in operation here. These translators must meet certain criteria in order to be sworn in by the court. As such, they are authorized to confirm the accuracy and completeness of a translation by providing their signature and stamp, but exclusively in the language combinations for which they have been approved.
Directory of sworn translators and interpreters
So how do you procure a certified translation which is guaranteed to be accepted by the German authorities? There is an official directory listing all sworn translators for written texts (and interpreters for verbal negotiation), and their direct contact details: http://www.justiz-uebersetzer.de/. Only these translators can perform officially certified translations, which can then be freely recognized by all German authorities.