About translations, post-editing and editing/reviewing

Legal practitioners sometimes confuse editing/reviewing with translating, and vice versa. And translation agencies can at times be unclear about their post-editing processes and related fees. The processes of translating, post-editing, and editing/reviewing are in fact distinct and call for distinct skills and expertise. Although machon editing is not a translation agency, in the interest of disintermediation we’ve included a few questions here to help you make an informed choice when selecting a legal translator / translation agency for a project. Knowing the right questions to ask will help you save time, money, and energy. These questions all assume that a confidentiality undertaking/NDA is in effect and that the translator has the requisite expertise in the relevant area of law.

Translating services

  • Does the translator work with CAT tools and other translation technology?
  • What sources will the translator use when creating your terminology database? What sources do you want the translator to use?
  • If it’s a big project, will one dedicated translator be working on the project?


  • Does the translation agency provide post-editing services? If so, what is the post-editor’s expertise and credentials?


  • Does the translation agency also provide editing/reviewing services? If so, what do these services consist of? What do you understand is needed and will be provided? And of course, does the editor/reviewer have the requisite skills and expertise?

Speak with your translator / translation agency about these questions to assist you in making an informed choice.