Certified Legal Translations, EU Data Protection Legislation and Its Impact on US Companies

Legal translation and legal interpretation services play an important role in data protection. We’re blogged about multilingual e-Discovery translations and European data protection laws and about cross-border transfers of data- requiring legal translation services– relating to foreign litigation.

On January 25, 2012, the European Commission published a proposal for a new European Union (EU) regulation governing protection of individual privacy and the processing of personal data. The proposed Regulation’s objective is to amplify and clarify current EU data protection rules, to adapt these to the constant developments occurring in information technologies, and to ensure the direct application of uniform data protection rules throughout EU Member States.

The provision arguably extends the territorial scope of the EU data protection rules as its terms would apply, in certain cases, to the processing of personal data by entities not established in the EU of individuals residing in the EU even if the entities do not use any EU-based equipment.

To accomplish this, such companies must appoint a representative for processing personal data in the EU. This obligation does not apply, however, to a non-EU entity established in a third country that offers an adequate level of protection of personal data. Currently, the US does not qualify.

However, non-EU data controllers would no longer be required to appoint a data representative in each EU Member State where personal data is processed. One data representative in any EU Member States would suffice. With that said, doing this of course requires the partnership of a foreign language translation service.

Up Next: Website Translation Services, Social Media and the Discovery Process