§ 6-704. Examination for interpreter certification.

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§ 6-704. Examination for interpreter certification.

   (A) Submission of Application. An individual who is desirous of being considered for certification as a certified, provisionally certified, or a registered interpreter as defined in these rules, in a particular language, must submit an application, on form(s) approved by the State Court Administrator, to the Administrative Office of Courts and Probation (AOCP).

   (B) Evaluation of Application. In order to protect the integrity of court proceedings and the safety of the public, a court interpreter should be one whose record of conduct justifies the trust of the courts, witnesses, jurors, attorneys, parties, and the public.

   (1) Upon Application for Interpreter Orientation, the AOCP will evaluate the application and determine if the applicant meets the initial qualification requirements of §§ 6-705, 6-706, or 6-707, including minimum age.

   (2) Upon Application for the Interpreter Written Examination after successful completion of interpreter orientation, the applicant shall execute a criminal history record check release form, and the AOCP will evaluate the application and conduct a criminal background check to verify the absence of criminal convictions and/or pending charges. A felony conviction of an applicant shall warrant denial of participation within the certification program, or removal from the roster of court interpreters. A misdemeanor conviction in the preceding 5 calendar years manifesting a significant deficiency in the honesty, trustworthiness, diligence, or reliability of an applicant may warrant denial of participation within the certification program, or removal from the roster of court interpreters.

   (C) Revocation or suspension of certification as a court interpreter in any other jurisdiction will preclude certification as a Nebraska court interpreter.

   (D) Orientation for court interpreters will include an introduction to Nebraska Courts and court proceedings, the ethics of a court interpreter, vocabulary, and the skills needed to assume the responsibilities of a court interpreter and meet the requirements for certification or provisional certification as outlined in §§ 6-705 and 6-706. After completing orientation and subject to the results of a criminal background check, applicants will be eligible to take a written examination. 

   (E) Written Examination. The written examination to qualify to take the oral examination of § 6-705(D) or be considered for provisional certification pursuant to § 6-706(F), shall require no fee for an initial or second attempt. If subsequent attempts are undertaken, based on previous non-passing scores, a fee as prescribed by the Nebraska Supreme Court shall be assessed per each attempt. For out of state residents, a fee as prescribed by the Nebraska Supreme Court shall be assessed per each attempt of the written examination to qualify to take the oral examination of § 6-705(D) or be considered for provisional certification pursuant to § 6-706(F). The written examination shall consist of three parts: general English language vocabulary, court-related terms and usage, and ethics and professional conduct. The written examination will be administered at such times and places as the AOCP may designate. The State Court Administrator shall waive this requirement for any interpreter who has previously taken the oral interpreter competency examination of § 6-704(E). If the applicant achieves a qualifying score of 80 percent or higher on the written examination, the applicant shall then be eligible to take the oral examination, if available for the interpreter's language, or provide documentation to support consideration for provisional certification.

   (F) Oral Examination. Oral examinations in specific languages will consist of three components: sight interpretation, consecutive interpretation, and simultaneous interpretation. Such examinations will be administered at such times and places as the AOCP may designate. Results of the oral certification examinations will be e-mailed or mailed by regular U.S. Mail to the applicant, per applicant's request.

   (G) Confidentiality. All information relating to the examination is treated as confidential by the AOCP and test administrators except that statistical information relating to the examinations and applicants may be released at the discretion of the State Court Administrator.

§ 6-704 adopted October 21, 2009; § 6-704(A)-(D) amended March 16, 2011; § 6-704(B)-(G) amended December 12, 2018; § 6-704(A), (B), and (D)-(G) amended April 14, 2021.