[Rev. 11/21/2013 1:01:31 PM--2013]

CHAPTER 656A - INTERPRETERS AND REALTIME CAPTIONING PROVIDERS

GENERAL PROVISIONS

NRS 656A.010        Legislative declaration.

NRS 656A.020        Definitions.

NRS 656A.023        “Charter school” defined.

NRS 656A.025        “Communication Access Realtime Translation” and “realtime captioning” defined.

NRS 656A.027        “Community setting” defined.

NRS 656A.028        “Division” defined.

NRS 656A.029        “Educational setting” defined.

NRS 656A.030        “Interpreter” defined.

NRS 656A.033        “Legal setting” defined.

NRS 656A.035        “Medical setting” defined.

NRS 656A.040        “Person who is deaf” defined.

NRS 656A.050        “Person whose hearing is impaired” defined.

NRS 656A.060        “Practice of interpreting” defined.

NRS 656A.062        “Practice of realtime captioning” defined.

NRS 656A.063        “Private school” defined.

NRS 656A.064        “Public school” defined.

NRS 656A.065        “Realtime captioning provider” defined.

NRS 656A.070        Applicability.

DUTIES OF AGING AND DISABILITY SERVICES DIVISION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

NRS 656A.080        Registry of persons engaged in practice of interpreting or practice of realtime captioning.

NRS 656A.082        Adoption of regulations: Qualifications and scope of practice for interpreters; establishment of ethical standards.

NRS 656A.084        Adoption of regulations: Qualifications to engage in realtime captioning; establishment of ethical standards.

NRS 656A.086        Filing of complaints; establishment of procedures for investigating and resolving complaints.

NRS 656A.088        Deposit and use of money.

NRS 656A.090        Adoption of regulations.

REGISTRATION OF INTERPRETERS

NRS 656A.100        Application; waiver of requirements; identification of professional classification requested; registration.

PRACTICE OF REALTIME CAPTIONING

NRS 656A.400        Application; registration.

DISCIPLINARY ACTION

NRS 656A.500        Acts constituting cause for disciplinary action.

NRS 656A.510        Authorized disciplinary action; regulations.

NRS 656A.520        Investigation of complaint; action by Division.

NRS 656A.530        Limitations on filing complaints.

UNLAWFUL ACTS

NRS 656A.800        Prohibited acts; penalties; action for enforcement; report of violation to district attorney or Attorney General.

_________

_________

GENERAL PROVISIONS

      NRS 656A.010  Legislative declaration.  The practice of interpreting and the practice of realtime captioning are hereby declared to be learned professions, affecting public health, safety and welfare, and are subject to regulation to protect the general public from the practice of interpreting and the practice of realtime captioning by unqualified persons.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1772; A 2005, 965)

      NRS 656A.020  Definitions.  As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires, the words and terms defined in NRS 656A.023 to 656A.065, inclusive, have the meanings ascribed to them in those sections.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1771; A 2005, 965; 2007, 163; 2009, 2401)

      NRS 656A.023  “Charter school” defined.  “Charter school” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 385.007.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 160)

      NRS 656A.025  “Communication Access Realtime Translation” and “realtime captioning” defined.  “Communication Access Realtime Translation” and “realtime captioning” mean the immediate, verbatim translation of the spoken word into English text using a stenographic machine or voice recognition software, and a computer and realtime captioning software.

      (Added to NRS by 2005, 964)

      NRS 656A.027  “Community setting” defined.  “Community setting” means any setting that is not an educational setting. The term includes, without limitation, a legal setting and a medical setting.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 160)

      NRS 656A.028  “Division” defined.  “Division” means the Aging and Disability Services Division of the Department of Health and Human Services.

      (Added to NRS by 2009, 2401)

      NRS 656A.029  “Educational setting” defined.  “Educational setting” means a public school, private school or charter school in this State.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 160)

      NRS 656A.030  “Interpreter” defined.  “Interpreter” means a person who is registered with the Division to engage in the practice of interpreting in this State pursuant to NRS 656A.100.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1771; A 2007, 163; 2009, 2401)

      NRS 656A.033  “Legal setting” defined.  “Legal setting” means:

      1.  A communication with a law enforcement officer, as defined in NRS 179B.070, that relates to a criminal investigation;

      2.  A communication with an attorney who is acting in his or her professional capacity;

      3.  A negotiation for a contract for which the estimated amount required to perform the contract is $1,000 or more; or

      4.  A judicial proceeding, including, without limitation:

      (a) A grand jury proceeding;

      (b) A court proceeding;

      (c) A pretrial examination, deposition, motion and related proceedings of like character; and

      (d) The proceedings of an administrative agency.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 160)

      NRS 656A.035  “Medical setting” defined.  “Medical setting” means any communication between a provider of health care, as defined in NRS 629.031, and a patient or a person acting on behalf of the patient concerning the provision of health care to the patient.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 160)

      NRS 656A.040  “Person who is deaf” defined.  “Person who is deaf” means a person who is not able to process information aurally and whose primary means of communication is visual.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1771)

      NRS 656A.050  “Person whose hearing is impaired” defined.  “Person whose hearing is impaired” means a person:

      1.  Who has a hearing deficit;

      2.  Who is able to process information aurally with or without the use of a hearing aid or any other device that enhances the ability of a person to hear; and

      3.  Whose primary means of communication may be visual.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1771)

      NRS 656A.060  “Practice of interpreting” defined.  “Practice of interpreting” means the facilitation of communication between persons who are deaf or whose hearing is impaired and other persons. The term includes, without limitation:

      1.  Translating spoken language into American Sign Language or any other visual-gestural system of communication or vice versa;

      2.  Translating spoken language into a tactile method of sign language or vice versa;

      3.  Translating spoken language into an oral interpretation of the speaker’s words by enunciating, repeating or rephrasing those words without using the voice to assist a person who is deaf or whose hearing is impaired in lipreading the information conveyed by the speaker;

      4.  Translating spoken language into a visual representation of spoken language that:

      (a) Uses eight hand shapes to represent groups of consonants and the placement of those hand shapes in four positions around the face to indicate groups of vowel sounds; and

      (b) Is used in conjunction with lipreading;

      5.  Translating spoken English into a system of sign language that is based on the syntax of the English language or vice versa; and

      6.  The use of any of the methods of interpreting or transliterating set forth in subsections 1 to 5, inclusive, by a person who is deaf or whose hearing is impaired to facilitate communication between another person who is deaf or whose hearing is impaired and an interpreter, or between two or more persons who are deaf or whose hearing is impaired.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1771)

      NRS 656A.062  “Practice of realtime captioning” defined.  “Practice of realtime captioning” means the facilitation of communication between persons who are deaf or whose hearing is impaired and other persons through the use of Communication Access Realtime Translation.

      (Added to NRS by 2005, 964)

      NRS 656A.063  “Private school” defined.  “Private school” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 394.103.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161)

      NRS 656A.064  “Public school” defined.  “Public school” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 385.007.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161)

      NRS 656A.065  “Realtime captioning provider” defined.  “Realtime captioning provider” means a person who is registered with the Division to engage in the practice of realtime captioning in this State pursuant to NRS 656A.400.

      (Added to NRS by 2005, 965; A 2007, 163; 2009, 2401)

      NRS 656A.070  Applicability.  The provisions of this chapter do not apply to a person who:

      1.  Is licensed in another state to engage in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning and who engages in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning, respectively, in this State:

      (a) For a period of not more than 30 nonconsecutive days in a calendar year; or

      (b) By teleconference if the interpreting services or realtime captioning services provided by that person are necessary because an interpreter or realtime captioning provider is unavailable to provide those services in person or by teleconference;

      2.  Engages in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning solely for meetings of nonprofit civic or religious organizations;

      3.  Engages in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning as necessary for the provision of an emergency medical or governmental service to a person who is deaf or whose hearing is impaired; or

      4.  Engages occasionally in the practice of interpreting in a social situation that does not require a qualified interpreter pursuant to the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12101 et seq., section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. § 794, or the regulations adopted pursuant to those provisions.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1772; A 2005, 965)

DUTIES OF AGING AND DISABILITY SERVICES DIVISION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

      NRS 656A.080  Registry of persons engaged in practice of interpreting or practice of realtime captioning.  The Division shall:

      1.  Establish a registry of persons who are registered with the Division to engage in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning. The registry must include, without limitation:

      (a) The name of the person and any other information prescribed by the Division; and

      (b) If the person is registered to engage in the practice of interpreting, each professional classification in which the person is registered to practice;

      2.  Make the registry available on an Internet website maintained by the Division; and

      3.  Provide a copy of the registry without charge to any person upon request.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161; A 2009, 2401)

      NRS 656A.082  Adoption of regulations: Qualifications and scope of practice for interpreters; establishment of ethical standards.  The Division shall, by regulation:

      1.  Prescribe for each professional classification of interpreters:

      (a) The level of education and professional training, experience and certification required to engage in the practice of interpreting in that classification.

      (b) The authorized scope of practice, including, without limitation, any condition, restriction or other limitation imposed on a person who practices in that classification.

      2.  Establish ethical standards for persons who engage in the practice of interpreting, including, without limitation, standards for maintaining confidential communications between an interpreter and a person who receives his or her services.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161; A 2009, 2401)

      NRS 656A.084  Adoption of regulations: Qualifications to engage in realtime captioning; establishment of ethical standards.  The Division shall, by regulation:

      1.  Prescribe the level of education and professional training, experience and certification required to engage in the practice of realtime captioning.

      2.  Establish ethical standards for persons who engage in the practice of realtime captioning, including, without limitation, standards for maintaining confidential communications between a realtime captioning provider and a person who receives his or her services.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161; A 2009, 2402)

      NRS 656A.086  Filing of complaints; establishment of procedures for investigating and resolving complaints.

      1.  A person who is dissatisfied with the services provided by a person who engages in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning or becomes aware that any one or more of the grounds for initiating disciplinary action may exist as to a person who engages in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning may file a complaint with the Division.

      2.  The Division shall establish procedures for investigating and resolving a complaint filed pursuant to this section.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161; A 2009, 2402)

      NRS 656A.088  Deposit and use of money.  Any money received by the Division pursuant to this chapter must be:

      1.  Deposited with the State Treasurer for credit to the Account for Services for Persons With Impaired Speech or Hearing created by NRS 427A.797; and

      2.  Used by the Division to pay the costs incurred by the Division in carrying out the provisions of this chapter.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 161; A 2009, 2402)

      NRS 656A.090  Adoption of regulations.  The Division shall adopt regulations to carry out the provisions of this chapter.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 162; A 2009, 2402)

REGISTRATION OF INTERPRETERS

      NRS 656A.100  Application; waiver of requirements; identification of professional classification requested; registration.

      1.  A person who wishes to engage in the practice of interpreting in this State must submit to the Division:

      (a) Proof that the applicant is at least 18 years of age;

      (b) An application in the form prescribed by the Division;

      (c) Proof that the applicant has complied with the requirements for education, training, experience and certification required for each professional classification of the practice of interpreting pursuant to this section or prescribed by a regulation of the Division pursuant to NRS 656A.082;

      (d) If the applicant wishes to practice interpreting in a community setting as an apprentice level interpreter, proof:

             (1) That the applicant possesses intermediate interpreting skills;

             (2) Of current participation in a program of mentoring or an agreement to participate in a program of mentoring with an interpreter in a community setting other than an apprentice level interpreter; and

             (3) Of ongoing participation in a training program for the professional development of interpreters;

      (e) If the applicant wishes to practice interpreting in a community setting as a skilled interpreter, proof:

             (1) That the applicant is certified as an interpreter by a nationally recognized public or private organization which is approved by the Division or possesses the skills necessary to practice interpreting at a skilled level in a community setting; and

             (2) Of ongoing participation in a training program for the professional development of interpreters;

      (f) If the applicant wishes to practice interpreting in a community setting as an advanced certified interpreter, proof:

             (1) That the applicant is certified as an interpreter at an advanced level by a nationally recognized public or private organization which is approved by the Division or possesses the skills necessary to practice interpreting at an advanced level in a community setting; and

             (2) Of ongoing participation in a training program for the professional development of interpreters;

      (g) If the applicant wishes to practice interpreting in an educational setting as an apprentice level interpreter, proof:

             (1) That the applicant has completed the Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment administered by a public or private organization which is approved by the Division and received a rating of his or her level of proficiency in providing interpreting services at least at level 3.0;

             (2) Of current participation in a program of mentoring or an agreement to participate in a program of mentoring with an interpreter in an educational setting other than an apprentice level interpreter; and

             (3) Of an individualized plan for professional development as an interpreter which includes, without limitation, specific goals for the applicant’s professional development as an interpreter;

      (h) If the applicant wishes to practice interpreting in an educational setting as an intermediate interpreter, proof:

             (1) That the applicant has completed the Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment administered by a public or private organization which is approved by the Division and received a rating of his or her level of proficiency in providing interpreting services at least at level 3.1; and

             (2) Of an individualized plan for professional development as an interpreter which includes, without limitation, specific goals for the applicant’s professional development as an interpreter;

      (i) If the applicant wishes to practice interpreting in an educational setting as an advanced interpreter, proof:

             (1) That the applicant has completed the Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment administered by a public or private organization which is approved by the Division and received a rating of his or her level of proficiency in providing interpreting services at least at level 4.0;

             (2) That the applicant possesses at least 4 years of experience practicing as an interpreter in a classroom; and

             (3) Of an individualized plan for professional development as an interpreter which includes, without limitation, specific goals for the applicant’s professional development as an interpreter;

      (j) If the applicant wishes to obtain a supplemental registration specifically to practice interpreting in a legal setting or medical setting in addition to obtaining registration pursuant to paragraphs (d) to (i), inclusive, any information or evidence as prescribed by a regulation of the Division pursuant to NRS 656A.084; and

      (k) Any other information or evidence the Division may require to determine whether the applicant has complied with the requirements to engage in the practice of interpreting.

      2.  The Division may, for good cause shown, waive any requirement set forth in subsection 1.

      3.  An applicant must identify each professional classification of the practice of interpreting for which he or she requests registration.

      4.  The Division shall:

      (a) Register each applicant who complies with the applicable provisions of this section as an interpreter described in the applicable paragraph of subsection 1; and

      (b) Issue to the applicant proof of registration.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1772; A 2007, 163; 2009, 2402)

PRACTICE OF REALTIME CAPTIONING

      NRS 656A.400  Application; registration.

      1.  A person who wishes to engage in the practice of realtime captioning in this State must submit to the Division:

      (a) Proof that the applicant is at least 18 years of age;

      (b) An application in the form prescribed by the Division;

      (c) Proof that the applicant has complied with the requirements for education, training, experience and certification required for the practice of realtime captioning as prescribed by a regulation of the Division pursuant to NRS 656A.084; and

      (d) Any other information or evidence the Division may require to determine whether the applicant has complied with the requirements to engage in the practice of realtime captioning.

      2.  The Division shall register each applicant who complies with the provisions of this section and issue to the applicant proof of registration.

      (Added to NRS by 2005, 965; A 2007, 166; 2009, 2404)

DISCIPLINARY ACTION

      NRS 656A.500  Acts constituting cause for disciplinary action.  The following acts, among others, constitute cause for disciplinary action:

      1.  Engaging in behavior that is contrary to the ethical standards set forth in the regulations of the Division.

      2.  Violation by an interpreter or realtime captioning provider of any of the provisions of this chapter or of any other law of this State or of the standards and other regulations adopted thereunder.

      3.  Aiding, abetting or permitting the commission of any illegal act.

      4.  Conduct inimical to the public health, morals, welfare and safety of the people of the State of Nevada while discharging duties as an interpreter or realtime captioning provider.

      5.  Engaging in the practice of interpreting or the practice of realtime captioning without the skills required to meet the communication needs of the recipient of the service.

      6.  Engaging in unprofessional conduct as defined by the Division by regulation.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 162; A 2009, 2404)

      NRS 656A.510  Authorized disciplinary action; regulations.

      1.  If an interpreter or realtime captioning provider has committed any act set forth in NRS 656A.500, the Division may:

      (a) Suspend or revoke the registration of the interpreter or realtime captioning provider;

      (b) Refuse to renew the registration of the interpreter or realtime captioning provider;

      (c) Impose upon the interpreter or realtime captioning provider a fine of not more than $5,000 for each violation of this chapter;

      (d) Require the interpreter or realtime captioning provider to pay restitution; or

      (e) Take such other disciplinary action as the Division deems appropriate.

      2.  The Division may adopt regulations setting forth a schedule of fines for the purposes of paragraph (c) of subsection 1.

      3.  The Division shall adopt regulations setting forth a schedule of penalties for engaging in unprofessional conduct. The schedule of penalties must not exceed the penalties set forth in this section.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 162; A 2009, 2404)

      NRS 656A.520  Investigation of complaint; action by Division.

      1.  When a complaint is filed with the Division, it must be considered by a person designated by the Division. If it appears to the person designated by the Division that further proceedings are warranted, the person shall report the results of his or her investigation together with his or her recommendation to the Division in a manner which does not violate the right of the person charged in the complaint to due process in any later hearing on the complaint.

      2.  The Division shall promptly make a determination with respect to each complaint reported to it by the person designated by the Division and shall dismiss the complaint or proceed with disciplinary action pursuant to chapter 622A of NRS.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 162; A 2009, 2405)

      NRS 656A.530  Limitations on filing complaints.

      1.  Except as otherwise provided in subsection 2, a complaint must not be filed against an interpreter or realtime captioning provider if 2 years or more have elapsed since the occurrence of the act or omission alleged as the ground for disciplinary action.

      2.  If the act or omission alleges fraud or misrepresentation, the complaint must be filed within 2 years after the discovery of the fraud or misrepresentation.

      (Added to NRS by 2007, 162)

UNLAWFUL ACTS

      NRS 656A.800  Prohibited acts; penalties; action for enforcement; report of violation to district attorney or Attorney General.

      1.  Except as otherwise provided by specific statute, it is unlawful for a person to:

      (a) Engage in the practice of interpreting in this State;

      (b) Hold himself or herself out as certified or qualified to engage in the practice of interpreting in this State; or

      (c) Use in connection with his or her name any title, words, letters or other designation intended to imply or designate that the person is an interpreter,

Ê unless the person is registered with the Division pursuant to NRS 656A.100.

      2.  It is unlawful for a person to:

      (a) Engage in the practice of realtime captioning in this State;

      (b) Hold himself or herself out as certified or qualified to engage in the practice of realtime captioning in this State; or

      (c) Use in connection with his or her name any title, words, letters or other designation intended to imply or designate that he or she is a realtime captioning provider,

Ê unless the person is registered with the Division pursuant to NRS 656A.400.

      3.  A person who violates the provisions of subsection 1 or 2:

      (a) Is guilty of a misdemeanor; and

      (b) May be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $5,000.

      4.  An action for the enforcement of a civil penalty assessed pursuant to this section may be brought in any court of competent jurisdiction by the district attorney of the appropriate county or the Attorney General.

      5.  Any civil penalty recovered pursuant to this section must be deposited with the State Treasurer for credit to the Account for Services for Persons with Impaired Speech or Hearing created by NRS 427A.797.

      6.  The Division shall report a violation of a provision of subsection 1 or 2 to the district attorney of the county in which the violation occurred or the Attorney General.

      (Added to NRS by 2001, 1774; A 2005, 966; 2007, 167; 2009, 2405)