Official Translation of Documents Singapore

Posted By Singapore Translators | Publised At 22/04/2024
Last Modified: 2nd May 2024

Official translation of documents is important in Singapore for many reasons. These translations are important for resolving legal issues, business transactions, immigration, and academic tasks. You can get help from professional services in Singapore that provide accurate translations and official documentation validity.


What is the Official Translation?

An official translation is a document translation certified and completed by a professional translator authorised to provide such services. It is often used for legal, administrative, or governmental purposes and guarantees that the translated text is accurate and faithful to the original, following required standards.

What is an Official Translation of Legal Documents?

When legal documents need translating officially, it means they’re converted from one language to another in a certified way. A qualified translator, certified by a recognised authority, completes this process.

The translation must be accurate and include a signed declaration from the translator, to maintain its authenticity and stay true to the original content.

How Many Types of Official Translations in Singapore?

Four main types of official translations serve different purposes based on the situation and needs.

Certified Translations: 

A certified translation is a translation done by a professional translation company. It includes a signed statement from the translator confirming that it accurately represents the original document and was done by a qualified professional. 

The statement also includes the name and address of the translator and their agency, along with an official stamp. 

Notarised Translations: 

A notarized translation requires the involvement of a notary public. The translator who completed the translation must go before the notary and sign a statement confirming the translation is a true and accurate version of the original document.

Sworn Translations: 

When a translator does a sworn translation, it means they’ve taken an oath in court to ensure the translated document accurately reflects the original. Sworn translators are the only ones allowed to do this, and usually only within the jurisdiction where they took their oath. They can then put their stamp or seal on the translated document.

Apostilled Translations: 

The Hague Convention, also known as the Apostille Agreement, is an international agreement signed by 120 countries as of 2021. It allows translated and notarised documents from one signatory country to be recognised as valid in all other participating countries, provided certain conditions are met.

Singapore is a member of this agreement, and the Singapore Academy of Law serves as the authorised body responsible for attaching Apostilles to documents in the country.

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What Types of Documents Typically Require Official Translation in Singapore?

Different kinds of documents in Singapore often require official translation, including but not limited to:-

  1. Birth certificates
  2. Marriage and divorce certificates
  3. Academic transcripts and certificates
  4. Death certificates
  5. Legal documents
  6. Immigration documents
  7. Medical records
  8. Financial documents
  9. Identification documents
  10. Employment documents

When Is It Necessary to Get an Official Translation in Singapore?

In Singapore, you may need an official translation in a variety of situations:

Legal and Court Matters: If you have legal documents, contracts, or court filings in a language other than English, you’ll need an official translation.

Immigration and Visa Needs: For visa and immigration purposes, documents like birth and marriage certificates, as well as academic transcripts, must be officially translated if they’re not in English.

Job Applications: Employers may ask for official translations of your educational and professional certificates if they’re in a language other than English.

Government Requirements: Any documents submitted to government agencies for licences, permits, or other official uses need to be translated if they’re not in English.

Healthcare: Medical records and health certificates may need official translation for healthcare providers.

Educational Applications: Universities and other educational institutions may require official translations of your academic records and certificates when applying for programmes.

Financial Deals: For significant financial transactions, such as purchasing property or starting a business, documents not in English might need official translation.

How Do I Get an Official Translation of a Document in Singapore?

If you need an official translation of a document in Singapore, here’s how you can get it done:

Identify the document: Decide which document needs translating, such as a birth certificate, marriage certificate, or academic transcript.

Choose a reliable translation service: Find a translation service that offers official or certified translations. Look at online reviews or ask for recommendations from friends, or professional associations. & are premier websites to provide accurate and precise official translations.

Get a quote: Ask the translation service for a price quote based on the document type, length, and turnaround time.

Provide the document: Send a clear copy of the document to the translation service. You may need to share the original, so keep it safe.

Give specific instructions: Tell the translator any specific requirements you have, such as a certified translation, notarization, or legalisation.

Review the translation: When the translation is finished, review it to ensure it’s accurate and complete.

Keep copies: Keep a copy of the original and the translated document for your records.

Submit the translation: Provide the official translation to the relevant authority or organisation as required.

By following these steps, you can get an official translation of your document.

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How Much Does It Cost to Have an Have an Official Translation of a Document in Singapore?

The cost of translating official documents in Singapore can depend on some factors, including the document length, language complexity, document type, and the translation service provider you choose. Translating standard documents such as birth or marriage certificates, or academic transcripts can cost between SGD 50 and SGD 150.

For more documents like legal contracts, technical manuals, or medical records, the cost can be higher, ranging from SGD 0.15 to SGD 0.30 per word or more. If you need a certified translation, there may be additional charges.

What is the Difference Between Certified Translation and Official Translation?

Certified and official translations are both used for legal, administrative, or formal purposes, but there are some difference between them:

Certified Translation:

    • This type of translation is done by a professional translator who then provides a signed statement.
    • The certification includes details like the translator’s name, credentials, and the date, serving as a declaration that the translation is true to the original document.
    • Certified translations are typically needed for legal documents such as birth or marriage certificates, academic transcripts, or immigration forms when presented to institutions or authorities.

Official Translation:

    • Official translations, also known as notarized translations in some areas, start with a certified translation and add another layer of verification.
    • In this process, a notary public verifies the translator’s identity and signature.
    • Official translations provide an extra level of trustworthiness and are often needed for documents used in court cases, visa applications, or other government proceedings.

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How Do You Authenticate a Translation?

Authenticating a translation involves a careful process to make sure it faithfully represents the original text while being clear and appropriate for the target audience. Here’s how it’s done:

Translator Selection:

We start by hand-picking a translator who’s not only fluent in both the source and target languages but also understands the cultural nuances of both.

Understanding the Source:

Before the translation, the translator thoroughly understands the source text, its context, and its tone.

Translation Phase:

Then, they get to work translating, making sure to capture the essence of the original while expressing it in the target language as naturally as possible.

Review and Edit:

Another qualified translator takes a look at the translation to catch any mistakes or awkward phrasings. They make sure it reads smoothly and accurately.

Culture Check:

Sometimes, a translation needs to be adapted to fit the culture of the target audience better. This could mean changing idioms or references to make them more familiar.

Language Quality Check:

The translation undergoes testing to ensure it’s easy to understand and fits the intended audience.


After any necessary revisions, the translation gets a final polish to fix any remaining errors in grammar, spelling, or formatting.

Certification (If Needed):

For official or legal translations, a certified translator or agency may verify that the translation is accurate and complete.

Client Approval:

The client gets to review the translation to make sure it meets their needs. Any final tweaks are made based on their feedback.

Keeping Records:

Throughout the process, it’s important to keep good records of the work done and any changes made.

Support After Delivery:

Even after the translation is delivered, the translator should be available for any questions or further adjustments.

What is a certified copy of a translated document?

In a certified copy of a translated document, you find the translator’s signature, their contact details, and sometimes an official stamp or seal. This certification confirms that the translation is genuine and can be recognised by relevant authorities. 

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Where can I translate official documents in Singapore?

If you need official documents translated, offers reliable, certified document translation services in Singapore such as legal, medical, financial, and academic. Their team of skilled translators is fluent in multiple languages and offers accurate language translation services.

The website provides prompt turnaround times and ensures your data remains secure and confidential. It has an easy-to-use interface for requesting quotes and placing orders, with excellent customer support available to assist you.

Can I translate an official document myself?

No, you can not translate an official document yourself. Automated online translators are not suitable for translating official documents. Certified translations by professionals are required for legal or formal use.

How much does a sworn translator cost in Singapore?

In Singapore, the cost of hiring a sworn translator can vary based on several factors, including the language pair, the complexity of the document, the urgency of the work, and the translator’s experience. Sworn translators are officially certified by the Singaporean government and are qualified to translate legal documents with official validity.

For standard documents like birth certificates, marriage certificates, and academic transcripts, the price typically ranges from SGD 50 to SGD 200 per page. However, more complex legal documents, such as contracts or court transcripts, may cost more, ranging from SGD 150 to SGD 400 per page.

Urgent requests often come with additional charges, as expedited services can incur extra fees. Common languages may be less expensive, while rarer languages can command higher fees.

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Where do I Translate and Notarize my Documents in Singapore?

In Singapore, you can find several reliable services for translating and notarizing your documents. Three notable websites that offer these services include,, and Here’s a brief look at each one:

This website offers professional translation services for a variety of documents such as legal, business, and personal papers. They employ native speakers to ensure accurate and culturally sensitive translations. This platform can also assist with notarized translation services in Singapore, legalization services, and certification of documents.

This service specializes in notarized translations in Singapore for legal documents, including contracts, certificates, and identification papers. Their team comprises qualified translators and experienced notaries, providing seamless and efficient translation and notarization services. They make the process easy for clients who need their documents translated and notarized quickly.

ICA Translation Services offers notary public translation services in Singapore for a wide range of documents such as academic, legal, and immigration papers. Their team consists of professional translators skilled in various languages and subject matters. They offer services such as translation, notarization, and certification for both personal and business needs. 

All three websites provide dependable and professional services, making them good options for your translation and notarization needs in Singapore.

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