Frequently Asked Questions                                

Why might we need two interpreters for this assignment?
Sign language interpreting is both mentally and physically demanding. In accordance with industry standards, certain assisngments i.e. legal, highly technical, lengthy, or fast-paced platform assignments, require more than one interpreter. Team interpreting increases the level of accuracy and decreases the likelihood that either interpreter will suffer a Cumulative Motion Injury (CMI). The most common injuries are to the wrist (carpal tunnel syndrome), the arm (tendonitis), the shoulder (bursitis), and the back.

Does the interpreter need any information in advance?
Yes. Whenever possible, in advance, please send any of the following: agenda, Power Point presentation, written text, transcription, lecture notes, web site address, script, song lyrics, etc. Otherwise, please be prepared to provide a hard copy and/or verbal summary, on site, just prior to the assignment.

How do I utilize Interpreting Services?
Requests for services should be made in advance to ensure availability of interpreters. New Clients will need to create an account before scheduling services. Contact or call 850-296-9478. To check for interpreter availability or to schedule in advance contact or call 850-296-9478.

Are Services available in my area?
VRI Services are available to clients anywhere in the U.S. Gulf States provides on-site services in a variety of areas across the southeastern U.S. To check for interpreter availability or to schedule in advance contact or call 850-296-9478.

What situations are appropriate to use VRI?
Geographic areas that do not have sufficient, qualified interpreters
When immediate communications are needed i.e. on-demand walk-in or emergency services
One on one or small group meetings
Meetings or events where participants take turns speaking
Medical situations where the patient or family member who is deaf can clearly see the screen without straining or causing injury
In some situations, VRI is used only until a qualified, on-site interpreter arrives i.e. Law Enforcement, Emergency room

What's the difference between VRI and VRS?
Video Remote Interpreting (VRI) is a fee-based service for meetings and events where, typically, the interpreter is in a different location from the meeting participants.

Video Relay Services (VRS) is a free service mandated by federal law and regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that allows a deaf person and a hearing person to communicate over a phone connection. The deaf person communicates in sign language with the Video Interpreter (VI) through an internet video connection.

What situations are not recommended for VRI?
To include, but not limited to, the following:
Situations that are sensitive in nature
Situations involving young children, those who use sign language other than ASL, or who use idiosyncratic language patterns.
Situations with participants with low vision or other secondary disabilities that may prevent them from properly using the remote interpreter.
Situations that require access to on site activities and speakers that cannot be accessed remotely.