Contracts must be in Asian languages in California

A new California law went into effect July 1 which would require auto dealers, banks, lawyers and landlords to provide translations in four Asian languages so non-English-speaking consumers can better understand contracts. The Consumer Protection for New Californians bill expands a 28-year-old state law that protects people who negotiate deals in Spanish.

The bill requires businesses that orally negotiate in Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog or Chinese to give their clients contracts written in those languages. It affects businesses such as car dealers, apartment owners, bankers and legal service providers. The bill's sponsor, Assemblywoman Judy Chu (D-Monterey Park), said these businesses were targeted because they often involve complex deals and lots of money. (Souirce: AsianWeek, July 15-21, 2004)

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