What is CART Service?

CART Service means Communication Access Realtime Translation Service. CART Service provides instantaneous translation of what is being said into visual print display so that it can be read (instead of heard). CART Service is one means of communication access for deaf or hard of hearing individuals who read English fluently.

Who uses CART services?

CART service enables communication access for deaf and hard of hearing persons who are competent in English, both written and oral, and who either (a) are not able to use ASL interpreters, sign language transliterators and/or oral interpreters in general or (b) do not choose to do so in the particular situation. In general, persons who choose to use CART service are late deafened adults, oral deaf persons and some hard of hearing persons. CART providers can also accommodate individuals who have a special visual requirement, such as large text or special formatting needs.

Is a CART Provider a kind of "interpreter"?

An "interpreter" translates one language into another, like English into American Sign Language. CART Providers convert spoken English into a printed English format. The CART Provider does not "interpret" from one language to another, but is more similar to a Transliterator who changes spoken English communication into a visually enhanced English-based format or Signed English transliteration. CART providers, ASL Interpreters, Signed English Transliterators and Oral Transliterators all provide communication access services, each through its own mode, for particular deaf, hard of hearing and late deafened people.

When can I use CART Service?

CART Service can be used in any situation. CART Services are often used in group meetings - legislative hearings, workshops, classroom settings, on-the-job training, advisory council or board meetings, court proceedings, and so on. CART Service can also be used in job interviews, supervisor-employee meetings, doctor appointments, meetings with lawyers and other service persons, in school, in adult education settings, in therapy sessions, in church and so on.

What is CART Projection Service?

The basic CART service is CART Translation Service which enables on-site communication between one or more persons with a hearing loss and one or more hearing persons. CART Translation Service provides the laptop computer screen which one or two consumers who have a hearing loss can read. If CART Translation is to be provided for more than two consumers or for a consumer with low vision, some type of CART Projection Service will need to be purchased also. Types of CART Projection Service include:

  • an overhead display using a screen
  • a display via computer monitor(s) provided by the CART Provider

Who pays for CART services?

According to several state and federal laws, state and federal agencies, the courts, consultants, doctors, lawyers, therapists, hospitals, museums, libraries, police departments, fire departments, colleges, universities, events of a town, employers, and many other entities are required to provide effective communication for deaf, late deafened and hard of hearing people. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) lists CART Service as one type of auxiliary aid which may be needed to enable effective communication to take place.

How much does it cost to hire a CART Provider?

As do other professionals who contract their services, CART providers charge fees based on qualifications, experience, and type of job assignment. The fees quoted below are approximate ranges; fees are set by the individual CART providers for jobs in the private sector.

Freelance CART Provider: a minimum fee ranging from $190 to $200 for the first two hours or any part thereof; additional charges for provision of projection equipment and provision of ASCII file. If the requester requested an ASCII output, all participants attending the meeting/event must be informed at the start of the meeting/event that an ASCII output will be created.

Travel and Parking Reimbursement

In the event that a CART provider is required to travel to and from an assignment, and such travel in either direction exceeds 25 miles, travel costs shall be reimbursed at the current mileage rate. This rate for mileage reimbursement covers the cost of tolls. CART providers may submit a receipt to MCDHH for actual parking. Original receipt from the parking facility will be required.

Travel time will be reimbursed at 1/2 the hourly rate, with 50 miles being the equivalent of 1 hour.

Exact fees per job, cancellation policy, travel, and mileage are negotiated by the paying consumer and the freelance CART Provider.

Where do I request a CART Provider or ask for more information?

The MCDHH Interpreter Service handles requests for CART providers. When you call MCDHH, ask for the CART referral specialist in the Department for Interpreter Services.

Can I give feedback about the CART Provider?

Yes. You can share feedback, both compliments and complaints, with the Director of Interpreter Services at the Commission. This information will be shared but your name will not be used without your permission.




This information is provided by the Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.