Differences Between Court Reporting and Legal Transcription Service

Posted by Gummy Tran on May 18, 2022.

Knowing the difference between court reporting and legal transcription services can be very helpful for a lawyer or someone involved in the practice of law. This is especially important when you need to know where to get legal transcripts for your next issue.

The main process of recording a collection of specific spoken words and converting it into a written word file is known as transcription. While transcribing may appear to be an easy skill, it is known to be a versatile skill that may be applied to a variety of job pathways. This could involve duties such as secretarial or medical transcription. Court reporting and even legal transcription are two other job choices that require transcription.

However, the distinction between the final two occupations, legal transcriptionists and court reporters, is sometimes misunderstood. These titles appear to be nearly identical. On the other hand, A court reporter and a legal transcriptionist have quite distinct responsibilities and educational qualifications.

Here are four key points to consider to assist you to distinguish between the two and decide which one to trust:

1. What is being transcribed

Differences between Court Reporting Transcription and Legal Transcription 1

Court reporting, as the name implies, covers all of the conversations that take place in a courtroom. A court reporter or stenographer transcribes case trials, or whenever the judge is present, for the purpose of keeping records.

Legal transcribing services include the following legal aspects:

  • Case trials
  • Depositions
  • 9/11 calls
  • Legal meetings

Court reporting transcription can be done by both court reporters and legal transcriptionists.


2. Who is the one transcribing

The transcriptionist in court reporting is a certified professional having the following credentials:

  • Completed education, usually in the form of an associate degree or a postsecondary certificate from a community college or technical school, as certified by the National Court Reporters Association.
  • State-issued licenses are obtained by passing the required tests
  • Certifications to demonstrate proficiency

The transcription service being used is represented by a legal transcriptionist. They’re usually someone with transcription experience. They’re trained particularly to transcribe court documents, hearings, and depositions to assist lawyers, law firms, or even private persons asking for transcription services for their own cases.


3. How is it transcribed

Differences between Court Reporting Transcription and Legal Transcription 2

Court reporters document every aspect of the trial deliberations since the transcription is for recordkeeping purposes. Transcription services are written in their entirety, with no notes. A “stenotype,” which is a unique keyboard designed to form letter combinations rather than individual letters like a conventional desktop keyboard, is used by court reporters to do this. Their transcripts usually follow a set format.

To transcribe debates, legal transcriptionists typically utilize a standard keyboard. However, unlike court reporters, they can make additional notes or concentrate on certain topics for easier reference by lawyers. They are particularly useful to legal professionals because of their flexibility.


4. 3 steps to get the transcription 

Differences between Court Reporting Transcription and Legal Transcription 3

To obtain court transcripts from reporters, you must go through the following steps:

  • Getting a copy of the court transcript
  • Receiving agreement from all parties involved
  • Explaining why you require the transcript

Because legal transcriptionists are frequently employed directly by lawyers or law firms, they have easy access to the transcripts.

However, in all circumstances, it’s critical to remember that the transcription service must be done legally and with the consent of all persons concerned.  


5. Vital things you can do with the transcript

Legal transcripts, whether from a court reporter or a third-party legal transcriptionist, offer many uses and benefits for lawyers and law companies. Among them are:

  • Creating a convincing argument
  • Concentrating on minor features or nuances
  • Spotting a flaw in your opponent’s arguments
  • Identifying a flaw in a witness’ testimony
  • Creating legal paperwork for personal records
  • Fellow lawyers in a firm with similar cases are being trained.

If a lawyer wants a complete picture of the trial, court report transcripts may be more useful. A court report prepared professionally and impartially can provide them with comprehensive information.

On the other hand, third-party legal transcriptionists will help some lawyers or private individuals because of their flexibility. Aside from being able to highlight crucial elements, legal transcriptionists can adapt to the needs of lawyers in terms of formatting and filtering out irrelevant information.

It’s critical to understand the differences between a court reporter and a third-party legal transcriptionist, especially if you need a legal transcription service. If you choose the latter, make sure your legal transcription service provider is capable of handling the job.


Choose professional transcription services

We have built a big network of legal transcribers from all around the world at GTE Media. We produce 99 percent accurate transcription services at a fast delivery time. Depositions, interrogations, hearings, examinations, briefs, and wiretaps can all be sent in audio or video format.  

Transcription services

We sincerely hope you will give us a chance. However, even if you do not, we hope that this post has assisted you in locating the best court reporting and legal transcription service for your needs.

Contact us today for a free consultation.

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