As someone who works in the legal field, you will undoubtedly need the support of a court reporter numerous times in your career. Court reporting is a unique profession that requires a specialized skill set. Here are seven skills you can expect a court reporter to bring to your next legal case.
- Incredible speed and accuracy on a stenotype machine: Court reporters, also called stenographers, use special equipment called a stenotype machine to transcribe the spoken word in real time. To become a certified court reporter in California, applicants must transcribe at a rate of 200 words per minute for at least 12 minutes straight while maintaining an accuracy of 97.5 percent.
- Mastery of the English language: To accurately transcribe the spoken word and eliminate any possible misunderstandings, court reporters must have a firm grasp of language, grammar, and vocabulary. That’s why English classes are a vital component of any court reporting educational program.
- Proficiency in legal and medical terminology: Court cases often involve legal and medical jargon. To prevent any delays caused by asking for clarification, court reporters become familiar with the most common terminology used in these industries. Then, they brush up on any terms they need to know before participating in a particularly technical case, thus promoting a smooth transcription process.
- Technical expertise: Court reporters are highly experienced with the technology used in their profession. This isn’t limited to just stenotype machines. An increasing number of court reporters are embracing web-based video conferencing, digital exhibiting, and other virtual proceedings without hesitation as they become more commonplace.
- Real-time reporting skills: The latest technology allows court reporters to provide immediate access to a transcript of what is being said out loud. Using special software, the shorthand on a stenotype machine is converted into fully written words and delivered to a computer screen in mere seconds. This is useful for refreshing the memories of attorneys and judges and allowing the deaf or hard-of-hearing to participate in the legal process.
- Professionalism: In addition to possessing specialized court reporting skills, these experts are highly professional individuals. Expect your court reporter to be punctual, neutral, and assertive to ensure an accurate transcript. Excellent business etiquette and confidentiality are other professional traits you will enjoy when working with a court reporter.
- Organizational and time management skills: Fast transcript turnaround time is a vital aspect of moving many legal cases forward. Rest assured that court reporters are organized and good at managing their time, which allows them to provide an accurate estimate of when your completed transcript will be ready. Expedited transcripts are also available if the regular delivery schedule doesn’t meet your needs.
At Talty Court Reporters, we utilize the latest technology to deliver the very best results in your legal case. Turn to us for top-quality court reporting, deposition services, transcriptions, video and audio conferencing, and much more. For additional information, or to request a cost estimate, please contact us today.