43 Quail Court, Suite 105
Walnut Creek, CA 94596


(925) 979-1968

(925) 979-1669

Contact Line:
(925) 323-6958

Hands to communicate with

Interpreting Services

The following is information we will need to process a request for interpreting services:

  • Deaf client’s name
  • Company/organization name
  • Date of assignment
  • Start and end time (approximate end time is fine)
  • Location of assignment
  • On-site contact person
  • On-site telephone number
  • Company/organization contact name (if different from on-site name)
  • Billing information
  • Comments relating to the assignment (i.e. sign style, subject matter, special requirements, written materials, number of people expected to participate, etc.)

This information can be called into the office, faxed, or sent via email.  We would like to have at least 48 hours notice; however, when that’s not an option do not hesitate to call our office immediately if you have a need for an interpreter.

The interpreter that is scheduled for the assignment should:

  • Arrive at least 10 minutes before the assignment is scheduled to begin, just in case there is any set-up requirements or unforeseen delays.
  • Provide the client with an introduction card from Beyond the Words, Inc. with the interpreter’s name.
  • Dress appropriately for the assignment.
  • Perform professionally according to the RID code of ethics.
  • Maintain the proper boundaries between interpreter/client/Deaf individual.
  • Call the agency if there is a drastic change to the assignment (i.e. it goes over the scheduled time frame, there is a question about services, the Deaf client does not show, there is additional information that the agency needs to provide, etc.).

Here are some helpful hints when using an interpreter:

  • Make sure interpreter is in a position to hear and see what is happening during the assignment. It is also important to place them in a position where they themselves can be seen and heard clearly.
  • The interpreter should be in a well-lit area. However, the light should come from in front of the individual, so for example, do not place them in front of a window.
  • Discuss the break schedule with the interpreter ahead of time. Interpreting is very physically and mentally taxing and interpreters usually require a five-minute break every twenty to thirty minutes.
  • The interpreter is there to facilitate communication. They are not participants.  They are neutral parties and will not interfere, advise or interject personal opinions into interpreted situation.
  • Do not say anything you don’t want interpreted. The interpreter is ethically bound to interpret everything they hear.
  • Speak directly to the Deaf person.
  • Speak at a normal pace and allow time for the Deaf person to respond if necessary.
  • The interpreter can only listen or watch one person at a time.  Make sure participants take turns speaking and that they don’t talk over one another.
  • If you have any questions, ask the interpreter directly.  They are always happy to help educate and provide the highest quality services.
  • When the assignment is complete ask the Deaf person if they were satisfied with the interpreting arrangements.  Also, would they like to work with the same interpreter again?  Give the agency feedback regarding the assignment if there is anything you think they should know for future services.