The patience and hard work of a court reporter is reciprocated with decent earnings and reputation in the media and court rooms. This article guides you about the various career opportunities in court reporting.
The proceedings of courts and other events carried out in matters of judiciary require the involvement of judges, lawyers, victims and the criminals. Besides them, the court reporters also play a crucial role in the judicial process. If you watch news or have sometimes caught a glimpse of legal proceedings, you must have seen the official court reporters on your TV screens. They’re always present in the court room, recording and covering the important hearings. The career opportunities in this field has increased owing to better prospects and growth in the law field.
Generally, there are generally two types:
- Official court reporters
- Freelance court reporters
The official court reporters work with the state and federal court houses and take down criminal and civil trials, hearings and proceedings. The most important factor is that they’re the employees of the state and federal government, and so they enjoy job security and are also paid the highest possible salaries.
The free lance court reporters are not government employees but they’re self employed. They work on contract basis and travel a lot to take record hearings, cases, arbitration, board meetings, etc. Freelancers also contribute their skills by attending schools for the hearing impaired and typing the class lectures of the teachers, so that children with hearing problems can read them. This requires them to always carry their laptops and steno machines.
The free lance court reporters also provide similar services to large firms and organizations with employees having problems of hearing. Another important work is to do the ‘closed captioning procedures’ on the TV. The closed captioning systems provide the display of transcription in audio portion of the programs. This helps the viewers to interpret the information provided on the screens in an easier way.
In the judicial proceedings, they note down every word either by writing or by recording. If they don’t understand any word, they can request the clients or the person to speak again. Maintaining a record of the proceedings is a major part of their work. The earning potential of a court reporter varies due to various factors that have been discussed in the further paragraphs.
The reporter having a work experience of less than a year is between USD 35,000 to USD 50,000 annually! A good starting salary. Isn’t it? Mostly, when you compare this salary range with the other traditional jobs, you’ll find that they’re competent with all of them. Reporters having work experience between one to four years is between USD 35,000 to USD 60,000. The more you experienced you get, the better would be your prospects of earning.
While choosing a specific career, we’re mostly influenced by the pay scales of that particular career. A craving for decent salary is appreciated, but while choosing a career, that’s not the only dimension that must be analyzed. They have bright prospects in the long term when it comes to making money. If you read the interviews of court reporters who have spend a decade or two in this field, you’ll find that they’re usually satisfied with their career development path.
Therefore, the bottom line is to do what interests you and that which suits best to your personality and aptitude skills. Court reporters have generally hectic schedule as they have to travel frequently to various places regarding their works. It is seen that they can earn as high as USD 85,000, (after very good work experience) and they also have the opportunity to upgrade their skills and knowledge for further career advancements.
Anybody having an aptitude and interest in this field must equip himself/herself with the right sets of certificates, diploma/degree programs and pursue this field diligently. The earning potential of the court reporter and other dimensions of this job are certainly well offering great growth opportunities! All the best for a bright career!