4.2 Eligibility Requirements for Court Certification

4.2.1 Qualifications and Requirements for Court Interpreter Certification

The following describes the qualifications that must be met to become a Board for Evaluation of Interpreters (BEI) certified court interpreter.

An applicant who is hearing must:

  • hold at least one BEI certificate at Level III, IV, V, III Intermediary, IV Intermediary, V Intermediary, Advanced, Master, or Oral: Comprehensive; or hold certification from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) with a Comprehensive Skills Certificate, Certificate of Interpretation and Certificate of Transliteration, Reverse Skills Certificate, Certified Deaf Interpreter, Master Comprehensive Skills Certificate, or National Interpreter Certification Advanced or National Interpreter Certification Master;
  • pass the DARS DHHS-approved court interpreter written test, which may be taken only by applicants who hold one of the certificates listed above; and
  • pass the court performance test, which may only be taken by applicants who have passed the court interpreter written test.

An applicant who is deaf must:

  • hold at least one BEI certificate at Level III, IV, V, III Intermediary, IV Intermediary, V Intermediary, Advanced, Master, or Oral: Comprehensive; or hold certification from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) with a Comprehensive Skills Certificate, Certificate of Interpretation and Certificate of Transliteration, Reverse Skills Certificate, Certified Deaf Interpreter, Master Comprehensive Skills Certificate, or National Interpreter Certification Advanced or National Interpreter Certification Master;
  • have completed the following hours of training and/or mentoring:
    • a minimum of 12 Continuing Education Units (CEUs), which is the equivalent of 120 clock hours, of DARS DHHS approved courses of instruction in courtroom interpretation knowledge and skills;
    • a minimum of 120 hours of actual practice provided by a certified court interpreter who has been approved by DARS DHHS to act as a mentor; or
    • a combined minimum of 120 hours of instruction and mentoring; and
  • have passed the court interpreter written test, which may be taken only upon completion and approval by DARS DHHS that the applicant has completed the required training and/or mentoring.

An applicant must provide DARS DHHS with documentary proof that the applicant meets the requirements for testing and for certification.

An applicant who formerly held BEI court certification but who is ineligible to renew their BEI court certification must meet all applicable qualifications and requirements of this section.

An applicant who is a military service member or military veteran and who is deaf may satisfy the training requirements of this section with verified similar military service, training, or education. This section does not apply to a military service member or military veteran applicant who is deaf and who holds a restricted license issued by another jurisdiction or has an unacceptable criminal history according to the laws applicable to DARS.

An applicant who is a military spouse will be issued an expedited BEI court interpreter certificate if the spouse holds a current license issued by another jurisdiction that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements in this section.

A person with an expired certification must not perform work requiring a certification (for example, interpret for a person who is deaf or hearing impaired at a court proceeding) underĀ Government Code, Chapter 57.