Five Things National Court Reporters Want Attorneys to Know!
While many attorneys really do “get” what we do as national court reporters, sometimes we’re overlooked. So here are five items every court reporter would love their attorneys to pay attention to.
1) Yes, we need breaks. We’re not robots. It would be awesome if we took a break every hour to hour and a half and took time for lunch (and dinner if you go into the evening – see item 2). That means at least 30 minutes to an hour so we can actually sit down and eat, relax, and be at our best for the rest of the job – just like you and the witness. Just because we sit quietly, don’t complain, and say we don’t mind if you keep going, we’re all better off if court reporters get to visit the bathroom, take food and water, and refresh their minds.
2) National court reporters want to know how long a job will go. They don’t ask because they want to get their nails done later, but because, like you, they have competing demands on their schedules. If a deposition will last just two hours, but the court reporter is scheduled for all day, the court reporter would like to know of the change in order to accommodate the needs of other clients. Or if attorneys decide at 4:00 pm to go until 8:30 pm., letting court reporters know ahead of time lets them work around family and other evening obligations to accommodate your needs.
3) Please let the court reporting firm know if you need an expedited transcript, a rough draft, or a realtime hookup (or any other special requests) when scheduling your deposition. National court reporters appreciate you and want to give you the very best service. Knowing your needs in advance lets litigation support services assign court reporters with any special skills you may need, lets them arrange for any special equipment needed, and lets court reporters arrange schedules to meet your needs. Sometimes life makes it difficult to give you what you need at the last minute, and knowing your needs ahead of time makes the difference in getting you what you need, when you need it.
4) Reporters would absolutely love to be paid promptly. Waiting six months to a year or more while you try your case probably sounds great to you, but to us it’s excruciating…waiting, waiting, waiting to be paid. And, really, though it may seem we’re doing just fine, we have the same expenses as any attorney: office overhead and personal living expenses — our kids like to eat dinner every night, too. [Symbol]
5) We appreciate you! We value your business, your friendship, and your loyalty. You are the reason we have our jobs and you’re important to us. We want to serve attorneys as valuable keepers of the record and a reliable resource to help you with your litigation needs.