Legal Interpreting Services, Foreign Language-Speaking Borrowers and California Civil Code 1632

We’ve blogged about the importance of professional interpreting and translation services when dealing with limited-English consumers. According to California Civil Code 1632, if a contract is negotiated in a foreign language, than that contract has to include a foreign language translation. As loans are considered contracts, they fall under this provision. If a foreign language translation is not provided and down the road a legal issue comes up such as a foreclosure, than the borrower has a legal defense against any action brought by the lender.

Specifically, according to the Code, the foreign language translation of the contract must be provided prior to the execution thereof and must include a foreign language translation of every term and condition. Further, the Code specifically includes a loan, extension of credit secured other than by real property, or unsecured, for use primarily for personal, family or household purposes; a lease, sublease, rental contract or agreement, or other term of tenancy contract or agreement, for a period of longer than one month, covering a dwelling, an apartment or other dwelling unit normally occupied as a residence. In other words, most lending-related contracts in California require a foreign language translation when the borrower is not an English speaker.

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