california supreme court


The Judicial Council of California's Language Access Services Program is comprised of the Court Interpreters Program (CIP) and the Language Access Implementation (LAI) Unit.

Court Interpreters Program

The Court Interpreters Program (CIP) strives to ensure access to the courts for persons with limited English proficiency or those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing by developing programs and practices that enhance the quality of interpretation and increase the availability of qualified interpreters in the courts.

In 1998, the Judicial Council approved the establishment of CIP. As part of the Language Access Services Program in the Center for Families, Children & the Courts, CIP oversees interpreter recruitment, education, licensing, discipline, and cross-assignments. CIP monitors the compliance requirements for California’s certified and registered court interpreters, which include continuing education and professional assignments requirements. CIP maintains a statewide registry, the Judicial Council’s Master List of Certified Court and Registered Interpreters (Master List). The Master List assists the courts and public with locating credentialed California court interpreters in good standing. CIP also oversees the credential review process, which addresses complaints brought against credentialed court interpreters. Lastly, CIP provides staff support to the Court Interpreters Advisory Panel.

The Judicial Council is required to report to the California State Legislature on the use of interpreter services in the courts and to report annual statewide court interpreter expenditures. These reports are available on the Studies & Reports webpage.

Learn more: Court Interpreters Program Fact Sheet

Court Interpreters Advisory Panel

The Court Interpreters Advisory Panel (CIAP) is a standing advisory committee of the Judicial Council. Rule 10.51 of the California Rules of Court states that the charge of CIAP is to assist the Judicial Council with performing its duties under Government Code sections 68560 through 68566, and to promote access to spoken-language interpreters and interpreters for deaf and hearing-impaired persons. To carry out this charge, the committee reviews and makes recommendations to the council on:

  1. Interpreter use and need in court proceedings;
  2. The certification, registration, testing, recruiting, training, continuing education and professional conduct of court interpreters; and,
  3. The findings of the language need and interpreter use study for interpreters in California court proceedings that is conducted by the council every five years pursuant to Government Code section 68563.

CIAP is unique in that a majority of the voting members must be court interpreters. Representing a diversity of languages, courts, geographic regions, and interests, the committee is instrumental in ensuring access to language services in the California courts and to justice partners who avail themselves of interpreter services.

Language Access Implementation Unit

On January 22, 2015, the Judicial Council adopted the Strategic Plan for Language Access in the California Courts (Language Access Plan) and formed the Language Access Plan Implementation Task Force (Task Force). Among other responsibilities, the Task Force was charged with assisting California’s 58 superior courts with the implementation of the LAP’s 75 recommendations. Effective March 2019, after the sunset of the Task Force, the Language Access Subcommittee was formed, under the Advisory Committee on Providing Access and Fairness (PAF), to ensure that language access continues as a core program and service in the courts. The Language Access Implementation unit supports this work and the ongoing efforts by the courts to promote and expand language access throughout the state.

Learn more: 2023 Language Access Fact Sheet

PAF Language Access Subcommittee Charge

The Language Access Subcommittee advises and presents recommendations to PAF regarding the Language Access Plan and its overarching goal of ensuring access to justice for all LEP court users.

When appropriate, the Language Access Subcommittee makes language access recommendations to PAF in the areas of technology, education, and translation; as well as on legislative and rule of court proposals to enhance language access services throughout the judicial branch.

Learn more: PAF Language Access Subcommittee