Car Accident Lawyer Injury Lawyers Product liability Legal counsel car accident Becoming a lawyer Trustworthy Lawyer Law Firm Right Lawyer Car Crash Personal Injury Lawyer Felony Private Attorney Ask A Lawyer Attorney court reporter

What You Should Know About Being A Court Reporter

The world of law has many different careers. Most assume that the only way to venture into the legal side of the professional world is to go to law school, but that’s not true. In fact, there are plenty of jobs, like being a court reporter, involved in the legal profession where you aren’t required to have formal education at all. Of course, it helps to have those qualifications but they are far from necessary.

One such career is a court reporter. This is a career in which you will need a background of education, which is often shorter than a usual college degree. Regardless, court reporters are an invaluable asset to the legal profession in and out of the courtroom. That’s because these professionals help document proceedings, which would then be recorded for future purposes.  If you’ve ever wondered about court reporting or considered it as a career, here is some need-to-know information.

What Do Court Reporters Do?

A court reporter, sometimes called a stenographer, is responsible for recording the valuable information in court cases, depositions, hearings, and other important meetings. They use a variety of devices, such as a stenographer’s keyboard and recording devices, to help record all of the information being presented both verbally, and by creating their written report. They help transcribe the proceedings into document form for archiving and research purposes. They may also be called upon by the judge to playback or recite important details during a proceeding.

court reporter

How Can You Find or Hire a Court Reporter?

Hiring a court reporter has become much easier, as with finding many legal professions. The professionals behind stress that courts or judges can find court reporters and sift through candidates to hire when searching online. This is a common way to find qualified court reporters with a good background in the field, or you can find freelance court reporters who work on their own. Either way, court reporters are easily available to hire or to become one if you so choose.

Where Do Court Reporters Get Trained?

Often, court reporters will attend courses or school to get trained properly. It is not an easy job and you need a high aptitude for typing speed, notation, diction, and close attention to detail. It is also a job that requires a lot of focus and poise. There is a lot of commotion that can happen in a courtroom, in which a court reporter must be stoic and committed to recording all of the relevant information even when there is a lot to get distracted by. There may also be a license that is required to become a working court reporter as well, but this varies by state. Likewise, a certification is a voluntary qualification that can help a court reporter attain better jobs in the field.

What Makes a Court Reporter Good?

As mentioned, a high rate of typing and the ability to type without mistakes is an important skill that one will need to become a court reporter. Likewise, even when mistakes are made, a keen eye for detail in editing the mistakes is important as well. Speed and efficiency are key, so detail orientation is a must for a prospective court reporter to be successful at this job. Listening, reading, writing, typing, and concentration skills are all the primary ways to be a good court reporter.

Is it a High-Paying Career?

There is a misconception that only judges or lawyers make a lot of money, when the reality is, that there are plenty of good-paying jobs in the legal field. Court reporters can make up to $55 000 median, which is good, with the possibility of making more given the certifications that can be obtained, as well as working in private courts. The salary can reach as high as $100 000, while freelance court reporters can charge hourly fees for their service.

What Courts Do They Work In or For?

Court reporters or stenographers don’t always work in courts. Mostly, they will either be working in courtrooms (public or private) and another equal amount (about 1/3rd) working in support service positions. Many stenographers work outside the courtroom or as freelancers, so it depends on the quality of skills one possesses to where they will be primarily working.

Being a court reporter is an unsung profession in the legal field. It’s often taken for granted, but they provide a service that is incredibly important. Documenting the proceedings of cases or meetings with accuracy helps the legal field record the details of these events to review and make records for future use.