American Sign Language Interpreting

Unlocking Communication: American Sign Language Interpreting Services

At Geneva Worldwide, we recognize the profound significance of American Sign Language interpreting services in bridging communication gaps. In a world where over 70 million individuals communicate through sign language, accessibility is key. Among them, more than 30 million Americans are hard of hearing, with over a million relying on the expertise of ASL interpreters.


Empowering Inclusivity

American Sign Language interpreting opens doors to a world of possibilities for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. It facilitates participation in seminars, medical appointments, court hearings, parent-teacher conferences, religious functions, and more.


Our Commitment to Clarity

Geneva Worldwide takes pride in offering nationally certified and credentialed sign language interpreters across the United States. Whether in-person or through remote video services, our mission is clear: to empower individuals and organizations by breaking down communication barriers.


Serving Diverse Needs

Our services extend far and wide. We assist attorneys in serving their deaf and hard-of-hearing clients, empower doctors to deliver crucial information to patients and guide students through the intricacies of leadership conferences. We understand that each situation is unique, and nuances matter.


A Trusted Partner

Geneva Worldwide ranks among the top in the industry. We are honored to be recognized as #5 in the Top 20 On-Site Interpreting Companies in the US by Common Sense Advisory, and we proudly hold the #8 spot on the global stage.

Discover how Geneva Worldwide’s American Sign Language interpreting services can make a difference in your world. We’re here to connect the dots, one sign at a time.

The Need for ASL Interpreting

The need for high-quality ASL interpreters is an often overlooked necessity. Geneva Worldwide is dedicated to addressing this critical issue by connecting individuals with qualified sign language interpreters.


Overcoming Healthcare Communication Barriers

In the realm of healthcare, the challenges faced by the deaf and hard-of-hearing community are profound. Boston University highlights a stark reality: many in this community lack access to clear communication within the healthcare system. This deprivation not only hinders their ability to seek medical care but also acts as a formidable barrier to receiving crucial health information. Consider the gravity of situations where life-and-death decisions hang in the balance solely because an ASL interpreter was either unavailable or not provided.


ASL: The Backbone of Deaf Culture

The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) and The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) both recognize American Sign Language interpreting as the cornerstone of deaf culture in the United States. ASL was created not just as a means of communication but as a vibrant and legitimate language in its own right. It enriches the cultural fabric of the community, providing a voice where it might otherwise be absent.


Breaking Down Daily Barriers

Everyday activities that the hearing community often takes for granted can become insurmountable hurdles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Simple joys like attending church services, shopping at the mall, participating in school activities, and celebrating weddings and birthdays—these are events where ASL interpreting transforms barriers into bridges, fostering inclusion and understanding.


Empowering the Next Generation

Deaf Child Worldwide underscores a significant challenge: early access to American Sign Language interpreting is crucial for the development of deaf children. Many face delays in acquiring and developing their language skills due to the lack of early exposure to sign language. However, when this access is provided from an early age, it paves the way for these young minds to thrive and reach their full potential.

In summary, ASL interpreting is not merely a service; it is a lifeline, a bridge to vital information, a means to preserve culture, and a beacon of hope for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. Geneva Worldwide is committed to making this essential service accessible to all who need it.

The History of ASL

American Sign Language (ASL) has a rich and evolving history that traces its roots back to the early 1800s in the United States. However, it wasn’t until relatively recently that ASL garnered the official recognition it deserves.


William Stokoe: Pioneering ASL Linguist

In the 1960s, a linguistics professor by the name of William Stokoe emerged as a driving force behind the legitimization of ASL. His groundbreaking work led to the creation of the first ASL dictionary, a monumental achievement that firmly established ASL as a legitimate language in its own right. This pivotal moment shattered misconceptions that ASL was merely a form of pantomime, highlighting its depth and complexity.


Championing Accessibility: The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was enacted, marking a watershed moment for those with disabilities, including individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. This groundbreaking legislation aimed to protect the rights of people with disabilities and eradicate discrimination. Notably, the ADA mandated that organizations responsible for hiring interpreters must bear the cost of these essential services, ensuring accessibility for all.


Official Recognition and Education

More recently, the White House officially recognized ASL as a language of instruction in schools, responding to a petition that garnered over 37,000 signatures. This significant development has sparked a growing interest among high school and university students eager to learn ASL. It is now considered a credible foreign language elective, reflecting the recognition of ASL as a vital component of linguistic diversity.


Beyond Translation: The Distinct Language of ASL

It is crucial to dispel the misconception that ASL is a mere gesture-based translation of English. ASL boasts its own unique word order rules and syntax, making it a distinct language with its own grammar and syntax. Like spoken languages, the interpretation of messages and expressions can vary based on the ASL interpreter’s expertise and style. Furthermore, the world of American Sign Language interpreting is diverse, offering various specialized approaches to meet the diverse needs of the community.

In essence, the journey of ASL from its humble beginnings to its current recognition as a legitimate language is a testament to the resilience and determination of the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. Geneva Worldwide is proud to be a part of this journey, bridging communication gaps and fostering inclusivity through ASL interpreting services.

Types of ASL Interpreting

Geneva Worldwide offers a range of American Sign Language interpreting services tailored to meet diverse communication needs. Here’s an insight into the types of interpreting we provide, along with a discussion on in-person versus remote/video interpreting.

Specialized Interpreting: Precision and Proficiency

Some situations demand specialized knowledge and expertise. For instance, in legal or medical contexts, our interpreters possess a deep understanding of the nuances inherent in attorney-client or doctor-patient relationships. Maintaining strict confidentiality in legal proceedings is paramount, and our ASL interpreters excel in this regard.

Our interpreters are well-versed in industry-specific jargon and come equipped with a wealth of experience, ensuring that interpretations remain accurate and sensitive to the unique demands of each field. Whether it’s interpreting testimonies and depositions or conveying crucial information within legally binding documents, negotiations, or mediation sessions, Geneva Worldwide’s credentialed interpreters uphold the highest standards of confidentiality and professionalism.


Consecutive Interpreting: Thoughtful Exchange

Consecutive interpreting facilitates thoughtful and comprehensive communication. It involves a structured back-and-forth approach, allowing one person to speak, the interpreter to convey the message, and then respond to the speaker. This method embraces natural pauses and breaks, enabling conversations to flow smoothly.


Simultaneous Interpreting: Real-Time Connection

Simultaneous American Sign Language interpreting operates in near real-time. It is particularly valuable for dynamic settings such as seminars, presentations, conferences, or large group gatherings. In this mode, the interpreter seamlessly conveys the message, often with minimal interaction between the speaker and the audience.

Both consecutive and simultaneous interpreting services can be delivered either in-person or remotely via video. Depending on the specific circumstances, remote video interpreting can still offer a live and interactive experience, making it a flexible option to accommodate various needs.

Geneva Worldwide understands that effective communication is multifaceted, and we are committed to providing the most suitable ASL interpreting solutions to facilitate seamless interactions and understanding in any context.

Services Offered

In-Person American Sign Language Interpreting

In many critical situations, there’s an undeniable need for the presence of a skilled ASL interpreter. These scenarios span a wide spectrum, from the utmost sensitivity of doctor’s appointments and court hearings to the more expansive domains of conferences, religious functions, and vibrant concerts. Geneva Worldwide understands the significance of these moments, and we’re here to provide you with expert ASL interpreters who excel in conveying every nuance.

If you’re seeking professional ASL interpreting services for your deaf or hard-of-hearing students attending high school or college events such as conferences, workshops, seminars, or classes, look no further than Geneva Worldwide. Our commitment to delivering accurate and effective communication sets us apart.

When it comes to the precision required in legal or medical situations, only a firm like ours possesses the finesse and experience needed to ensure clarity. Contact us today to secure the services of a seasoned ASL interpreter for your local event or meeting.


Remote Video Interpreting

Our remote video interpreting service is a gateway to expanded accessibility. It not only accommodates multiple participants but also enables the ASL interpreter to reach a larger audience simultaneously. This approach enhances comprehension as the subtleties of sign language interpreting become more visible and accessible. At Geneva Worldwide, we embrace cutting-edge technology to bring people closer, bridging communication gaps with the power of remote video interpreting.

Geographic Reach

Real-time captioning promotes inclusivity and reduces strain for deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals. It also helps individuals who may have difficulties understanding fast speech, accents, mumbling, or background noise. Additionally, CART captioning services offer clarity when names, brand names, or technical terminology is mentioned. It supports concentration and enhances the experience for individuals with diverse learning abilities and attention differences. Furthermore, videos with captions show higher user engagement and an improved user experience.

Learn more about our commitment to customer satisfaction by checking out the testimonials below:

Importance of Cultural Sensitivity

American Sign Language interpreting goes beyond a mere translation of English. It encompasses distinct syntax and relies heavily on facial expressions, which can alter the meaning of signs significantly. Moreover, the deaf and hard-of-hearing community exhibits a broad spectrum of language skills. Those who were exposed to ASL from a young age tend to be highly proficient, while individuals who acquired ASL later in life or were not exposed to it may have varying levels of proficiency.

According to Britannica, the cultural model recognizes deafness as a difference rather than a disability. This perspective emphasizes that deaf individuals possess a unique identity, with ASL serving as a central component of their culture, complete with its own history and social organization. Shifting the focus from deafness as a biological phenomenon to a cultural difference empowers the community.

This shift in perspective is especially crucial in education. Educational methods should be grounded in ASL and American Sign Language interpreting as primary modes of instruction. In the early 21st century, the future of ASL in education faced uncertainty, but the bilingual and bicultural approach has substantially improved access to this natural language.

At Geneva Worldwide, we are fully committed to providing ASL interpreters who are not only skilled but also culturally sensitive and aware of the nuances of each situation. We prioritize the protection of confidential information, guarantee secure video platforms, and provide confidentiality agreements to ensure a secure and respectful environment for all.

Certification and Quality

With a legacy spanning 120 years, Geneva Worldwide has earned a well-deserved reputation for excellence in interpretation services, translation, and transcription. We proudly serve Fortune 1000 Companies, government agencies, and a diverse clientele, providing nationally certified linguists who excel in their fields.

While the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) doesn’t impose specific credential requirements, Geneva Worldwide strives to exceed minimum expectations to deliver top-tier ASL interpreting services. As a testament to our commitment to quality, we hold ISO 9001 certification. This designation underscores our customer-focused approach, ensuring you consistently receive high-quality products and services.

In the realm of ASL interpreting, partnering with a reputable interpretation company is paramount. It instills confidence that every interaction aligns with current regulations and standards. Geneva Worldwide takes this responsibility seriously, securing certified ASL interpreters who possess not only the requisite skills but also a deep understanding of the sensitivity and specificity often demanded by subject matter.

We understand that ensuring compliance and facilitating effective communication go hand in hand, and we’re here to provide you with the peace of mind you deserve.

Technology in ASL Interpreting

For those who are deaf or hard of hearing, Video Relay Service (VRS) provides a vital avenue for telephone communication. VRS involves a video link between the deaf or hard-of-hearing individual and an interpreter, bridging the gap between visual and auditory communication. This innovative service can be used in two primary scenarios: when a hearing person initiates the call or when a hearing person receives a call.

One noteworthy aspect of VRS is that communication is confined to the telephone and the video connection between the deaf or hard-of-hearing individual and the interpreter. This means that the two parties wishing to communicate cannot be in the same room physically, making VRS an indispensable tool in healthcare settings and legal proceedings.

Typically, VRS services are billed on a per-minute basis, with the organization or individual requesting the service responsible for covering the costs.

Remote solutions, including VRS, prove invaluable in situations where in-person interpreting is impractical or impossible. This could include scenarios where an interpreter is required in a remote location or when immediate interpretation services are needed, transcending geographical constraints and ensuring effective communication.

At Geneva Worldwide, we recognize the significance of VRS in fostering communication inclusivity, and we are committed to delivering top-notch VRS services to meet your specific needs.

Legal Requirements

At Geneva Worldwide, we take legal compliance seriously. Our service providers adhere to all relevant laws and regulations, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in the United States. In the healthcare sector, we also strictly adhere to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to safeguard the privacy and confidentiality of all healthcare-related communications.

While the ADA does not mandate specific credentials for hiring an ASL interpreter, Geneva Worldwide goes the extra mile to ensure that our interpreters possess the National Interpreter Certification (NIC) and extensive experience. We believe that meeting these high standards is essential to delivering exceptional ASL interpreting services.

Furthermore, Geneva Worldwide is dedicated to providing secure video conferencing platforms, ensuring your interactions are protected and confidential. To underscore our commitment to confidentiality, we offer confidentiality agreements, providing you with peace of mind and legal assurance.

Our unwavering commitment to legal compliance, quality, and confidentiality sets Geneva Worldwide apart as a trusted partner in ASL interpreting services.

How to Book an ASL Interpreter

Booking an ASL interpreter with Geneva Worldwide is a straightforward process designed to meet your unique needs. Whether you’re a healthcare provider, legal professional, event planner, business owner, government agency, or an educator in higher education or K-12, we understand that your requirements can be highly specific. Here’s how you can get started:

  1. Contact Us: Reach out to us by phone or submit a request through our user-friendly online portal. Our responsive team is ready to assist you promptly.
  2. Discuss Your Needs: When you get in touch with Geneva Worldwide, rest assured that we comprehend the intricacies of each ASL interpreter request. We’ll take the time to discuss your specific requirements in detail.
  3. Review Our Transparent Quoting: We believe in transparency. You’ll receive a clear and detailed quote for our ASL interpreting services, ensuring that you have a complete understanding of the scope and cost of your request.

At Geneva Worldwide, our goal is to make the booking process seamless and efficient, so you can focus on what matters most—effective communication.

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    “I wanted to thank you again for your wonderful help to get this meeting with our employee accomplished today. [The interpreter] was a pleasure – as you have been throughout this, our first exposure to requiring an interpreter for an employee. I thank you again and please know that if we should ever have need of an interpreter – we will come back to you and Geneva.”

    Sarah J.

    “Thank you again to your team for their work on Tuesday. It was wonderful! We really appreciate that the folks translating are so adaptable to our content and artists and it is just such a pleasure working with you all.”

    James C.

    Communication Access Realtime Translation
    “Thank you so much for your help interpreting French today. I very much appreciate it. You made the appointment go much more smoothly. I know I will be reaching out to Geneva Worldwide again for French translation services because the participant will need one or more follow-up appointments.”

    Patrick D.

    How to Get in Touch for Services

    There are three ways to connect with us. You can call us at 212-255-8400 or toll-free 1-877-GO-GENEVA. 

    Or you can request a quote or fill out our contact form to learn more:

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is the difference between translation and interpreting?

    Translation involves converting text from one language to another, requiring a deep understanding of both languages and subject matter expertise. On the other hand, interpreting facilitates understanding across linguistic barriers, whether in person or remotely, including American Sign Language interpreting. It’s a person-to-person experience, even when conducted via telephone or video connections.

    Do I need special equipment for American Sign Language interpreting using VRS?

    You’ll need a reliable internet connection, and any electronic device with a camera, such as a laptop, desktop, mobile, or tablet, will suffice. For a detailed list of requirements, please contact us at

    What if I need services for a 3-day event?

    Geneva Worldwide can certainly accommodate your needs. Contact us to secure an ASL interpreter who possesses subject matter expertise and can be present throughout the entire event.

    I own a company and want a regular ASL interpreter for events.

    We can provide staffing for all your company’s events, including regular and recurring ones. If you have preferred interpreters, we can arrange repeat bookings for your company meetings or events, ensuring seamless communication.

    Who can use VRS services?

    With Geneva Worldwide, anyone seeking to facilitate communication between two or more parties who speak different languages can utilize our services. VRS is highly accurate, effective, and convenient, and it extends to various fields, including medical, legal, educational, governmental, business interactions, and even recreational activities like sports games.

    Can I hire you if I run a small non-profit?

    Absolutely. We are well-versed in serving local municipalities, and our ASL interpreters are available to provide your non-profit with high-quality interpretation tailored to meet your specific needs.

    Do I need more than one ASL interpreter for an event?

    According to, a qualified ASL interpreter may be certified and possess the right education, experience, and content knowledge for a particular job. It’s important to note that not all certified interpreters are qualified for every job, and there can be substantial barriers to obtaining certification, especially for historically marginalized groups. Geneva Worldwide is a reliable choice for your ASL interpreting needs, as we prioritize both certification and qualifications to ensure exceptional service.