Hiring professionals for legal services can get pricey, especially in major cities like Washington, D.C., or in any of the large cities of Maryland or Virginia. And with the plethora of choices out there, attorneys may find it especially daunting to know what to look for in a good court reporter, especially if they want to hire a certified court reporter.
But hiring a certified court reporter for your depositions is worth the time it takes to sift through your choices. A truly professional court reporter will save you money in the long run, while allowing you to do your best work for your clients.
Lowest rates are often the deciding factor when choosing a service provider – and they shouldn’t be. What really matters when selecting a legal services provider is the professionalism and quality of the services they provide. Choose your certified court reporter with care, and here’s what you can expect:
Extensive Professional Experience A certified court reporter should not be confused with a transcriptionist. Transcriptionists can be employed outside of the legal field. They may work for medical or government organizations, for example, and may not have any experience in the legal field.
Certified court reporters are not only extensively trained in legal terminology, they also have considerable experience in courtroom practices and procedures; plus, they can type at blazing-fast speeds – upwards of 225 words-per-minute!
Transcriptionists are skilled typists, but court reporters also have experience with legal terms, legal documents, and how court cases progress. Court reporters are accustomed to dealing with the background noise, regional accents, interruptions, and delays that often occur in depositions. Because of their in-depth experience with legal proceedings, a certified court reporter is able to provide much more accurate court transcriptions than a regular transcriptionist can.
Confidentiality, discretion, and neutrality
Confidentiality is of the utmost importance in a court case, and no one understands this better than a court reporter. A certified court reporter will never discuss the details of your case before or after the deposition with anyone you have not designated to communicate about the case. Court reporters also understand the importance of remaining neutral – and maintaining the appearance of being neutral – throughout the deposition or testimony.
Rapid turnaround of documents
Companies that provide professional court reporting services or deposition services understand how important it is to quickly get accurate transcripts to the reviewing attorney. This means your deposition transcript won’t get buried in a queue of less-important documents, and delay your case. In fact, most court reporting firms offer their clients expedited court transcription services. They will also provide you with a rough draft of the transcript if you need to begin review immediately.
When you absolutely depend on accuracy, professionalism, and swift turnaround, a regular transcriptionist simply can’t offer the superior product that a certified court reporter can!