Frequently Asked Questions

The most common questions that I am asked are answered here. If you can’t find the information you’re looking for, just get in touch and ask – I’m always happy to talk.
Do you translate from English into Spanish?

No. The vast majority of qualified translators in the UK translate only into their own native language. This is because, beyond terminology and the most basic concrete nouns, meanings and nuances never overlap perfectly between languages. Translation requires complete mastery of the target language, not just in terms of vocabulary and grammar, but of nuance, connotation and historical context as well, in order to select the very best translation for any word or phrase. This total, intuitive fluency is much more readily available in language or languages that we have spoken from birth. If you need a good English-Spanish translator, have a look at the directories of qualified linguists held by the CIoL and the ITI, or let me know – I may be able to recommend someone.

How soon can I expect my translation?

The turnaround time I am able to offer will depend on my availability and on the length and complexity of your project. I am often able to be flexible and if you have a tight deadline, just let me know and I will do my best to get you there.  When I send you a quotation, I will give you a fixed date of delivery, so you will always know when to expect the finished work. For more information, please read my complete Terms of Service.

Do you charge a rush fee?

I do not routinely charge a rush fee, that is, I don’t ask my clients to pay me extra just to make me translate faster. I work swiftly but thoughtfully for all of my clients, and I won’t accept a project if I don’t feel I have time to do it justice. However, I do offer a Weekend Express Service (see rates for more details), which is exclusively for projects that really need to be turned around between Friday and Monday. For this there is a 35% surcharge.  Texts must be no more than 8000 words in length, and you must send all source materials to me by 3pm (UK time) on the Friday.

Do you offer a volume discount?

If your project contains more than 50,000 words, you can take advantage of my priority pre-paid offer. This allows you to purchase pre-paid credits, which help bring the cost of the project down while shooting you to the front of the queue. Contact me to find out more. 

What payment methods do you accept?

Once I have delivered the finished work to you, I will send you an invoice to be paid within 30 days. The easiest and most efficient way to pay from the UK is by electronic transfer, and you will find Tinta Viva’s account details on your invoice. I also accept UK cheques and PayPal. From outside of the UK, or if paying in a currency other than £ Sterling, I would prefer you to pay electronically via a currency broker – this is very easy to do and again, you will find guidance on your invoice. Alternatively, I will accept international PayPal transfers but I do need to make an additional charge for international cheques, so if possible they are best avoided. For full information on payment and delivery, please see my Terms of Service.

Can I pay in advance?

If you prefer to pay in advance, then yes, of course! Unfortunately I am unable to take credit card payments.

Do I need to pay VAT?

Tinta Viva is VAT-registered and so by law I need to charge standard rate VAT (currently 20%) above my own prices.

If you are based outside of the United Kingdom, you will need to check the specific VAT regulations for your country. Usually, if you are registered for VAT in another EU country, or based outside the EU entirely, then I will not need to add VAT to the cost of your translation. However, individuals and non-VAT registered companies outside the UK but within the EU must generally be charged VAT at the standard UK rate. I will work out the VAT applicable when I send you a quotation for your project, so you will be able to see the full cost to you before I begin work.

Can you certify my translation?

In the UK, unlike in some civil law jurisdictions, there is no such thing as a “sworn translator.” For most purposes, for example university admissions, a “certified translation” is one that is accompanied by a written statement signed by the translator confirming his or her identity and stating that the translation is true, accurate and completed to the best of the translator’s ability. I am happy to certify translations on request for no additional charge.

A “notarised translation” (also sometimes called a “sworn translation”) is similar, but in this case the translation is taken to a solicitor or notary public, in front of whom the translator swears as to the accuracy of the translation and signs the declaration. The solicitor will also confirm the identity of the translator before signing and stamping the translation. For notarising a translation, there is a flat fee of £40.

It is always best to check whether you need a certified or notarised translation, because in many cases the extra expense of having the translation notarised will not be necessary.

Do you have Professional Indemnity Insurance?

Of course. Every project I take on is covered by my insurance up to a value of £500,000. If you require a higher level of cover, please contact me to discuss your requirements.

Do you have a data security policy?

I do. Safeguarding both your personal data and the confidentiality and security of the information with which you entrust me is something I take very seriously, and as a former database manager I have a good understanding of how best to protect your data. You can read my data security policy here, and if there are any further precautions specific to your project that you would like me to take, please just let me know.

Do you have a social responsibility policy?

As a very small company, Tinta Viva doesn’t have a formal CSR programme or shiny brochure, but I take my values very seriously and this is reflected in how I run the business. I believe that the work we do says a lot about who we are, and it is important to me to do good work. This means two things: Firstly, that I will do everything I can to ensure that the work I deliver to you is excellent in every way; secondly, that I will endeavour to ensure that Tinta Viva Translations has only positive impacts on our planet and all of its inhabitants.

Tinta Viva needs only very limited physical resources, but I take care to ensure that everything I use, from printer paper to the many cups of coffee I consume over the course of my day, is responsibly sourced, produced and disposed of, and I’ll always take the environmentally-friendly version if one is available. I like to keep the paper throughput of my office to a minimum and so prefer to communicate by email if possible.

I love working on projects relating to the environment, to human rights, to international development and to urban policy because these are subjects that I have always been passionate about. Registered charities and non-profit organisations working in all fields can benefit from Tinta Viva’s Non-profit Discount, reducing the standard rate by 10%.

I also run a pro bono programme and take on a number of assignments free of charge every year, so please get in touch if you’d like to apply.