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Do I have to pay for a court interpreter?

Deaf or hard-of-hearing persons do not have to pay the costs for a sign language interpreter. For persons who speak a foreign language and need an oral court interpreter, the state will pay the foreign (oral) language interpreter. However, Iowa law requires reimbursement of the interpreter fees by one or both of the parties. The court will charge the fees as court costs at the end of the case. The only exceptions are in criminal cases when charges are dismissed, a defendant is found not guilty, or a court reduces the amount of fees defendant pays based on the defendant’s ability to pay.

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