Division Policy 6.15


Interpreter Services


August 12, 2009


January 18, 2013


This policy will be reviewed and updated as needed.


To provide guidelines for the provision of interpreter services


34 CFR 361.48(j) and 34 CFR 361.28



Interpreter service refers to the provision of sign language services to the client as needed during their rehabilitation program.

General Policy

All deaf-blind clients must be referred to the Division of Vocational Rehabilation (DVR) under the Cooperative Agreement the Division of Blind Services (DBS) and DVR have signed. If DVR is the lead agency, they will provide interpreter services, but this does not exclude DBS from paying for such services for DBS specific activities. If DBS is the lead agency, they will provide interpreter services, but this does not exclude DVR from paying for such services for DVR specific activities. In dual cases, DBS will be responsibility for interpreter services for any activities within and support by DBS and DVR will be responsible for interpreter services for any activities within and supported by DVR. Community Rehabiliation Programs (CRPs) are expected to provide interpreter services for clients receiving training through their organization. It is the responsibility of physicians and other vendors (e.g. job coaches, training sites) who agree to serve the client to be responsible for interpreters if needed for an exam.


  1. DBS can purchase interpreter services utilizing a client services authorization only when all similar benefits for such services have been exhausted, or there is a documented justifiable reason. Examples of exceptions to this policy are:
    1. DBS has determined there is a need to meet with a client separately from DVR even though DVR is the lead agency;
    2. an initial interview is needed to discuss needed services and client is not yet being assisted by DVR;
    3. minimal job coaching is needed with a DBS staff member; or
    4. a job interview necessitates an interpreter and coordination with DVR if they are they lead agency cannot be accomplished in time for that to take place without being in jeopardy of losing an employment opportunity;
    5. any other situation where DBS finds itself in need of an interpreter and DVR, CRP or vendor is unable to provide interpreter service.
  2. DBS will pay the hourly rate for interpreters as established by the local deaf services agency or DVR if there is no local deaf services agency.

Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the Bureau Chief of Client Services.

Original signed by Joyce Hildreth, Director, Division of Blind Services, August 12, 2009

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