How to Hire the Best Court Reporting Firm for Your Needs

court reporting

When it comes to hiring a court reporting firm, it’s imperative that you know how to evaluate, compare, and ultimately select the right partner. But if this is your first time working with a court reporter, you might not know how to proceed. Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered.

The Significance of the Court Reporter

 Court reporting services don’t always get the respect and acknowledgement they deserve. They’re often overshadowed by other elements and systems that are more visible in trials and depositions – like lawyers, judges, jury members, witnesses, etc. But in the grand scheme of things, court reporters – the silent guardians of the record – play a critically important role in every case they’re involved in.

It’s fairly easy to find a court reporter. The National Court Reporters Association currently certifies nearly 14,000 court reporters in the United States – and that’s just half of the total number of court reporters in the marketplace. The challenge lies in finding the right court reporter.

A skilled court reporter is accurate, efficient, organized, and confident. They need to be capable of recording what is said in a deposition with at least 95 percent accuracy (and preferably higher). It may even be necessary for the reporter to have the ability to translate into different languages. Without the right court reporter, the integrity of a deposition is undermined and may fail to meet the required standards of the law.

 How to Select the Right Court Reporting Firm

 With so many court reporting firms to choose from, choosing the right reporter for your deposition can seem like a real challenge. But it’s not as difficult as it may appear – granted you know what to look for. Here are some factors to consider:

  1. Relationship

A good court reporting firm will anticipate the needs of the paralegals and provide quality service to match. It should be a natural combination, like peas and carrots.

While it’s hard to know exactly what this relationship will have in store until you actually get into the process of a deposition, there are some telltale signs during the due diligence process. You should look for a firm that’s proactive, cooperative, and focused on you. They should ask questions and inquire about your preferences. This shows a willingness to adapt to your style, processes, and systems.

  1. Location

Consider for a moment whether you want to work with a local court reporting firm. Is this something that matters to you? For some, it’s a necessary requirement. For others, it’s simply a luxury.

Likewise, are you okay with a “big box” court reporting firm, or do you want a small company? There are pros and cons to both. In the end, it all comes back to finding the right fit. What feels right to you?

  1. Responsiveness

You can tell a lot about a court reporting firm by how easy or difficult it is to get a hold of someone. Do your phone calls always go to an automated voice messaging system? Does it take days for emails to be returned? If so, you’ll probably want to think twice about using their services. A good court reporting firm is highly responsive and engaged.

  1. Transcription Skills

It’s one thing to have a court reporting firm that feels like a good fit and is very responsive. But at the end of the day, a court reporter is tasked with transcribing your deposition. Thus, you need to carefully consider their transcription skills.

Not all court reporters are created equal. It’s imperative that the firm has a stable of qualified reporters so that they can match the right one with your subject matter and niche. This saves time, eliminates confusion, and ensures you end up with an accurate deposition.

  1. Comprehensive Services

 There’s nothing worse than having to deal with multiple vendors. When selecting a court reporting firm, choose one that offers comprehensive services. They should be able to handle as much of the deposition as possible. This includes court reporting, videography, interpreters, etc.

 Set Yourself Up for Success

 Every court reporting firm offers a different flavor or skillset. Take the time to determine precisely what you’re looking for in a reporter and how each firm can meet your needs. The proper due diligence will ensure your deposition is accurate and reliable. Don’t rush the process!



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