Capita interpreter dispensed with in a trial
We started a 3 day hearing on 25th June with my client giving evidence via a Capita interpreter. To begin with she was unfamiliar with the process for taking the oath, simply reading it to the witness and asking for confirmation.
It then quickly became apparent from the answers to questions posed that the witness was not being asked the question as it had been put in English. After about 40 minutes of questions the other party who was also Punjabi speaking indicated that the interpreter was not interpreting either the question or the response correctly. My own interpreter confirmed this. The witness also complained that the interpreter was confusing her. A decision was taken to dispense with that interpreter and put in a request for another, who arrived at 3:15. The first day of the hearing was therefore effectively lost.
I can also tell you that in January or February this year I was involved in a case where the Turkish, unrepresented, father had travelled from Moldova for a final hearing. The interpreter called in sick on the morning of the hearing and Capita were unable to provide a replacement. My instructing solicitor was willing and able to find a replacement from another agency but this was not permissible because of the contract with Capita. No hearing took place, the hearing had to be adjourned to May.