The California Code of Civil Procedure has a section, 2025.32(c) which reads:

We've said before that court reporters are "keepers of the record" and it's true. We have almost a sacred duty to take down whatever is said on the record exactly as it was said. We don't offer descriptions of participants' body language or the volume at which they spoke. We only take down what they said. That's a no-brainer, right?

Many people think that "shorthand" is out-of-date and old-fashioned. Perhaps it's not used by court reporters today, but it is the foundational skill of our profession and it does have many uses elsewhere. This year as we approach the latest of NCRA's Speed Contest, a new record may be set. Competitors will write four dictations of one minute each at speeds of 370, 380, 390, and 400 words per minute. The new record holder will be in great company (one of history's earliest speed writing competitors was Titus Caesar, the 11th Caesar of Rome.

Back to back recognition! The Recorder, a California leading online and print legal trade journal and news website has informed us that HG Litigation was selected as one of the top firms in the Best Court Reporting Services category of their esteemed "The Best" survey for the second straight year. Check out the digital edition here.

Let's face it: Sometimes our jobs as court reporters expose us to some grim, disturbing information. Yet, there are times that we hear things that are, well, unbelievable. We hear things that make it hard to keep a straight face. We thought we'd share some of our favorites, gathered from various corners of the legal world.

Without further ado, we give you your chuckle of the day…

Technically speaking:

Lawyer: "What is your date of birth?"

Witness: "July 15th."

Lawyer: "What year?"

Witness: "Every year."

"We have a network of licensed (in those states where applicable) Process Servers who can assist with personal service of your documents in an expeditious and professional manner. Our team provides constant updates regarding status of service of process.  We also have the resources to effect International service.

Things have changed from the days of pen and paper court reporting. Time passes and technology advances; so too does the profession. There are some basics, however, that never change. Now that you (or someone you know) are a newly minted court reporter, here are words of wisdom to help you get started on your successful career journey.

The Basics:

That's the question the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA) is asking with a call for essays ( NCRA will select certain submitted stories for inclusion is an upcoming book that features inspirational and motivational essays for use as a student resource.

Alternate dispute resolution (ADR), known broadly as mediation or arbitration, is an excellent means of reaching a settlement in a case. It cuts down on the delays going to trial sometimes involves, as well as reducing expenses. Though it's not a trial, it's still a type of adversarial meeting; with each party working to achieve their goals. However, it can be far less adversarial if done correctly.

It's hard not to know about the Federal Sequestration these days; the effects are everywhere, be it reductions in police and fire services, smaller budgets for public schools – including universities – and more. What may not be so obvious to those outside "the business" of justice is the impact sequestration is having on the judicial system.


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