ALABAMA REGISTRY OF INTERPRETERS FOR THE DEAF

Leading the interpreting profession, serving the interpreting community, connecting to the Deaf community.


How to Become an Interpreter in Alabama

So…You’re thinking of becoming a professional interpreter?  THAT’S GREAT!!  There is a continued demand for highly qualified, skilled sign language interpreters in Alabama and across the United States.  ALRID is here to be your guide and your resource, on your journey to working as an interpreter. 

First we need clarify that the Alabama Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (ALRID) is not a licensing or certifying organization.  ALRID is a non-profit volunteer member organization whose mission is to support the continued growth of the profession and to ensure effective communication through excellence in providing interpreting services.  Although ALRID is not a certifying or licensing body, we strongly encourage you to consider becoming a member of ALRID as a part of your professional development.  ALRID offers/ sponsors workshops and trainings throughout the state at various times of the year. We issue a quarterly newsletter to members and publish relevant information in the field of Interpreting on our website.  ALRID also supports certification and licensure, and therefore, we are happy to provide the most helpful information possible.  ALRID members also represent you, and the views of other Alabama interpreters, as Governor appointed members on the Licensing Board.  

About the Licensing and Permitting Requirement in Alabama:

The Alabama Licensure Board of Interpreters and Transliterators (ALBIT):  was established in the best interest of the public health, safety and welfare to regulate the practice of interpreting and transliterating on behalf of Alabama citizens including those who are hard or hearing, deaf, or speech disabled.   The Council of Organizations Serving Deaf Alabamians, which includes a variety of Agencies and Organizations worked together to successfully pass legislation for the establishment of “Alabama Licensure for Interpreters and Transliterators Acts” in 1998. 

This Licensure Act/Law states that any person who provides interpreting or transliterating services -- after March 15, 1998 -- for pay of any kind (no matter their job title) is required to retain and annually renew an ALBIT license or permit.  For more information about the Licensure Act in Alabama, we encourage you to visit the ALBIT website at http://albit.alabama.gov.

The ALBIT issues Licenses and Permits based on an applicant’s documentation of qualifications as outlined in the Licensure Law.  The following is a brief synopsis of the different options for which Alabama interpreters may qualify:

A License may be issued to individuals who provide current documentation of a valid nationally recognized certification from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID)-which may include certification from the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) or the Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment (EIPA).

A Permit may be issued to individuals who provide documentation of skill, as approved by ALBIT, but do not yet meet the requirements for national certification from RID..

To provide you with the best guidance, we’ve divided the information below into informational “Options” – depending on where you are in your career.  Please choose the option that fits your experience and documentation or feel free to explore them all.  If you need personal assistance, please send us an email and we’ll do all we can to assist you with your questions. 

Option 1 License (Renewable)

If you hold current valid RID recognized certification, then you may qualify for an ALBIT Interpreter License. 

To apply for an initial License, you’ll need to submit ALL of the following to the ALBIT, either online or by mail:

  • 1.    Notarized application for a License.
  • 2.    Payment of the nonrefundable application fee of $50
  • 3.    Payment of the nonrefundable initial License fee of  $175 (renewed annually)
  • 4.    Copy of your current RID Certified Membership Card
  • 5.    Documentation of H.S. Diploma, GED, or Certified College Transcript.
  • 6.    Documentation of US citizenship (driver’s license, passport, etc.).
  • 7.    Notarized documentation showing you passed an ALBIT approved code of ethics/written exam if you were certified after 1-1-1995.

Option 2 Permit (Renewable)

If you have not yet passed an RID recognized interpreter assessment (NIC, NAD-IV or V, CI, CT, Ed:K-12, etc.), then you may qualify for an Interpreter Permit.  A Permit limits you to provide services in limited situations for which the permit has been issued.

To apply for an initial Renewable Permit, you’ll need to submit ALL of the following to the ALBIT, either online or by mail:

  • 1.    Notarized application for a Renewable Permit,
  • 2.    Payment of the nonrefundable application fee of $50
  • 3.    Payment of the nonrefundable initial Permit fee of  $125 (renewed annually)
  • 4.    Documentation of H.S. Diploma, GED, or Certified College Transcript.
  • 5.    Documentation of US citizenship (driver’s license, passport, etc.).
  • 6.    Documentation proving you have passed either an RID approved written ETHICS EXAM or the Jacksonville State University Interpreter Knowledge Skills Assessment*
  • 7.    Documentation proving that you have passed one of the following Performance Assessment Tests:
  • a.    *Georgia Quality Assessment (GAQA) Levels 3, 4, or 5
  • b.    *Florida Quality Assessment (FLAQ) Level 3
  • c.    *Florida Educational Interpreter Evaluation (EIE) Level 3
  • d.    *Mississippi Quality Assessment (MSQA) Level 3
  • e.    Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment (EIPA) Levels 3.0 – 3.9

*(this assessment is no longer available but those who passed it previously may submit proof with their application)

Option 3 Provisional Permit (Non-renewable)

The Provisional Permit is for persons who have no documentation of approved credentials and are requesting permission to provide Interpreting and/or Transliterating services in limited situations while working toward obtaining credentials needed to earn a renewable Permit or License. The Provisional Permit is NOT renewable, it is limited to 12 months from the day of issuance.  Those who obtain a Provisional Permit should be ready to pass both a written and performance assessment, as approved by the ALBIT, and apply for their renewable License or Permit prior to lapse of their Provisional Permit.

To apply for a Non-Renewable Provisional Permit, you’ll need to submit ALL of the following to the ALBIT either online or by mail:

  • 1.    Notarized application for a Renewable Permit,
  • 2.    Three Recommendation Forms from Certified Licensed Interpreters
  • 3.    Payment of the nonrefundable application fee of $50
  • 4.    Payment of the nonrefundable Provisional Permit fee of $125
  • 5.    Documentation of H.S. Diploma, GED, or Certified College Transcript.
  • 6.    Documentation of US citizenship (driver’s license, passport, etc.).

Option 4 Deaf Individual working as Deaf Interpreter

If you are a Deaf individual and wish to apply for exemption from Licensure requirements and wish to work as a Deaf Interpreter (DI) and do not yet meet requirements to obtain a License, you’ll need to submit ALL of the following to the ALBIT either online or by mail:

  • 1.    Notarized application for a Deaf Interpreter Exemption Request,
  • 2.    Payment of the nonrefundable application fee of $50
  • 3.    Payment of the nonrefundable Provisional Permit fee of  $125
  • 4.    Documentation of H.S. Diploma, GED, or Certified College Transcript.
  • 5.    Documentation of US citizenship (driver’s license, passport, etc.).


For more information concerning the ALBIT, please visit http://albit.alabama.gov or send us an email at administrator@alrid.org.



• (C) 2017 Alabama Registry of the Interpreters • PO BOX 647, Chelsea, AL 35043 • 

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