Gartin Building Courtroom with the Great Seal of the State of Mississippi

Court language interpreter seminar scheduled Sept. 19-20 in Jackson

September 14, 2018

The Mississippi Administrative Office of Courts will introduce bilingual speakers to the requirements for court interpreting during a seminar scheduled for Sept. 19-20 in Jackson.

The Ethics and Skill Building Seminar will be held at the Mississippi Supreme Court training room in the Gartin Justice Building, 450 High Street in Jackson.

A registration fee of $100 includes the seminar and lunch for both days. The registration form is at this link:

The program agenda is here:

Participation in a court language interpreter seminar is the first step in the program which will train, certify, and test individuals who wish to serve as interpreters in Mississippi courtrooms. Candidates to become interpreters must already be fluent in English and a second language, and must develop an understanding of court proceedings. The seminar will provide an introduction to court proceedings. The program will introduce participants to the role of the court language interpreter, ethical requirements, modes of interpretation and credentialing requirements.

Participants should arrive by 8 a.m. Sept. 19 to sign in. Presentations are scheduled 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. both days.

The AOC developed the Mississippi Court Interpreter Credentialing Program to assist state courts in their endeavors to provide equal access to justice for limited English proficiency individuals.

AOC Deputy Director Lisa Counts said, “It is the responsibility of the courts to ensure meaningful access to justice for all people in the United States, whether the person speaks English or another language. Our Constitution and laws demand it, and we are making great strides in providing the people of Mississippi with true access to justice.”

The AOC program provides all state courts with a list of language interpreters who have demonstrated proficiency in oral and written interpretation of court proceedings. The credentialing program provides two levels of proficiency: registered and certified. Certified is the more advanced level.

Twenty-two interpreters currently are credentialed by AOC. Languages include Spanish, Mandarin Chinese and Portuguese. Credentialed interpreters include 20 Spanish speakers, one Mandarin Chinese speaker, and one who speaks Portuguese. There is a need for Vietnamese speakers, but none have been credentialed yet.

Nine interpreters are certified, and 13 are registered. Interpreters live in Bay St. Louis, Biloxi, Clinton, French Camp, Gulfport, Hazlehurst, Meridian, Newton, Ocean Springs, Oxford, Tupelo and Vicksburg as well as Cordova, Goodlettsville, Memphis and Nashville, Tenn., and New Orleans.

AOC adopted Standards for Court Interpreters and a Code of Ethics for Court Interpreters on Oct. 17, 2011. The rules for court interpreters apply to municipal court, justice court, youth court, county court, circuit court, chancery court and grand jury proceedings. Rules regarding certification are at this link:

For additional information, contact Administrative Office of Courts Deputy Director Lisa Counts at 601-359-3470.