Deaf Interpreters (DI){not to be confused with ‘interpreter for the Deaf’} are specialists who provide interpreting, translation, and transliteration services in American Sign Language and other visual and tactual communication forms used by individuals who are Deaf, hard-of-hearing, and Deaf-Blind. Deaf Interpreters work most often in tandem with hearing interpreters(see graphic).

Like other professions, these DI’s like their colleagues have interpreting training, however with additional specialty training, equips them to be best suited for interpreting situations with complex language demands and dynamics. Situations involving a Deaf or Hard-of-hearing person who is not fluent in American Sign Language (foreign born, immigrant), has a additional disability (e.g. cognitive impairment) or limited language due to education history are situations where a Deaf Interpreter is best suited.

Sign Language interpreters are able to assist identifying when a DI may need to be called in. Deaf and Hard-of-hearing individuals may also independently and directly request a DI based on previous exposure and experience with them. The acronym CDI (Certified Deaf Interpreter) is also used when referring to these specialists.