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Language Access LEP/ASL

Limited English Proficient (LEP) individuals appear in court, not just as litigants or criminal defendants, but also as witnesses. Failure to provide appropriate language services to LEP individuals can have serious effects on cases, even when an LEP person’s interests are not directly at stake.

It is important for courts not to burden parties by charging them when court interpreters are needed. Providing certified/qualified interpreter assistance at no cost to the parties serves the interests of all involved. An LEP person who must pay for an interpreter to participate in proceedings bears a greater financial burden to pursue a case than individuals who are not LEP. Charging for language access services may discourage LEP individuals from using interpreters, causing them to struggle through their court appearances without understanding or being able to communicate with the court.

The Indiana Supreme Court provides the Vanderburgh Circuit and Superior Courts with grant funding to provide LEP and ASL (deaf and hard of hearing) individuals access to justice through in-person court interpreting, as well as a telephonic interpretation service called Language Line Services, which can interpret in over 250 different languages.

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REQUEST FOR INTERPRETER FORM

  • Court proceedings are in English. If a party or witness does not speak or understand English well, he or she may need an interpreter. The interpreter will allow him or her to testify, speak to the Judge, and understand what others are saying in court. Certified and qualified court interpreters are trained to interpret in court. If you need language help, you can ask the the court to provide a court interpreter by filling out the page linked above.
  • You should complete this form if you or a witness in your case needs an interpreter. A witness is someone who provides information in court, under oath. You should complete a separate form for every witness who needs language help. Complete the form and submit it to the Court Administrator's Office. 
  • Courts try to provide an interpreter in every language. Sometimes a court cannot provide an in-person interpreter in every case.

Submit completed forms to:

Vanderburgh Superior Court, Attn: Laura Tomes, Court Administrator's Office, 825 Sycamore Street, Room 114, Evansville, IN  47708   Email: LTomes@vanderburghgov.org

Should a court client/customer feel that his/her rights to meaningful language access have not been met by the Court, the following procedure may be followed to register a complaint:

  • The person with the complaint (the complainant) should contact the Court to report the complaint by completing and submitting the attached Language Access Complaint Form.

Contact information: Laura Tomes, Court Administrator’s Office, Vanderburgh Superior Court, 825 Sycamore Street, Room 114, Evansville, IN  47708 Phone: 812-435-5469   Email: LTomes@vanderburghgov.org

The Vanderburgh Circuit and Superior Courts are committed to providing services to all members of the community it serves, regardless of their ability to speak English. If you feel you have been denied services because of the language you speak, please complete this form and submit it by mail or email to either address listed above.

Language Access Complaint Form

     Formulario de Queja - español

     Mẫu Khiếu Nại Về Quyền Tiếp Cận Ngôn Ngữ - Tiếng Việt

Language Access Plan for Circuit and Superior Court