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Freelance contractors play a vital role in our office’s mission of providing foreign language interpreting and translating services to U.S. government officials and in support of U.S. foreign exchange and assistance programs. Please see the Interpreting and Translation sections for information about our selection process. To apply as a potential interpreter or translator, please complete an LS Testing Application Form [484 KB].

Contract interpreters and translators must be able to work legally in the United States but are not required to hold U.S. citizenship. Eligibility to work with the Office of Language Services will be determined by U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services guidelines and will be corroborated by verifying that all relevant documentation is presented with the application. If you have any doubts, please refer questions about general eligibility to your local USCIS office  before applying. Because freelance contractors are not employees of the State Department, the Office of Language Services cannot sponsor visa applicants.

Contract interpreters and translators must undergo a background check to obtain a Moderate or High Public Trust  certification if their applications are successful.

Permanent direct-hire interpreter and translator positions are very rare. When available, openings for staff positions will be published on .

Interpreting Information for Freelance Linguists

Translating Information for Freelance Linguists

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future