Become a Court Interpreter

To be a California certified and/or a registered court interpreter, a person must be at least 18 years of age and possess applicable language skills. Specifically, an applicant must be able to facilitate communication to flow between the court and court users in a court setting. This includes the ability to interpret with high accuracy and the ability to accurately translate content from one language to another in a judicial setting.

Find your language

Certified Spoken Languages

To become credentialed in a certified spoken language you are required to pass the Written Exam and the Bilingual Interpreting Exam (BIE). 

Certified spoken languages:

Arabic, Armenian (Eastern), Armenian (Western)*, Cantonese, Farsi (Persian), Filipino (Tagalog), Japanese*, Khmer, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, Punjabi (India), Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

*The BIE is not available for this language

Registered Spoken Languages

To become credentialed in a registered spoken language you are required to pass the Written Exam, the Oral Proficiency Exam (OPE) in English, and the OPE in your target language (if available).  

Some registered spoken languages:

Albanian, Bengali, Dutch, French, German, Hindi, Hmong/Mong, Igbo, Italian, Lao,  Polish, Somali, Thai, Turkish, Urdu, Uzbek, Wolof, and more.

American Sign Language (ASL)

Interested candidates now have two reciprocity pathways to enroll on the Judicial Council Master List as a credentialed ASL Court Interpreter: The Texas Board for the Evaluation of Interpreters (BEI) Court Interpreter Certification or the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) Specialist Certification: Legal. 

California Court Interpreter Workforce Pilot Program

On May 17, 2024, the Judicial Council approved the launch of the California Court Interpreter Workforce Pilot Program. The pilot program is intended to increase the number of court interpreter employees in the courts. 

Is Court Interpreting for You?

New! Becoming a California Court Interpreter

This inspirational one-hour panel discussion explores the court interpreting career from the perspective of three active credentialed interpreters. 

Getting Started in Court Interpreting

Find out if a career in court interpreting is right for you with these answers to frequently asked questions and advice from California courts' Court Interpreters Program. (2:17)

A Day in the Life of a California Court Interpreter

Hear from current interpreters in California and their journey to become certified to assist limited English Proficient litigants across justice in the courts.

Last Modified: 11/14/23