Legal stuff

The OTTIAQ Ethics Seminar

Frustra Legis Old Montreal

I attended the OTTIAQ ethics seminar this past weekend. As difficult as it was to be locked up in a downtown office tower over this glorious weekend, I am quite glad I participated.

Our Saturday comprised of a tight overview of Chapter C-26, the Quebec Professional Code.

Who knew this law was written to protect the public and not the translator? And what of the use of the term "specialist":

58. No person may use the title of specialist or act in such a way as to lead to the belief that he is a specialist unless he holds an appropriate specialist's certificate.

This may not be as obvious in English, but in French, all translators have a "specialité" or are "spécialisés" in a particular's part of the lingo. The more you translate in a specific field, the better you become in that type of translation and over time you become "specialized". So to find out you are not even allowed to go near this particular term, let alone use it, well...for a translator is comes off as rather "intégriste" on the part of the government. It is strictly reserved for, yup you guessed it...medical doctors or those in health-related professions with "specialist" certificates.

So watch out translators, it could cost you a formal notice or notice of default and a slap on the wrist from the "Ordre" if it appears on your business cards, your website or any form of advertisement in Quebec.