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Everything You Wanted to Know About Stenographers, But Were Afraid to Ask

 Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016

Everything You Wanted to Know About Stenographers, But Were Afraid to Ask  – From Your Miami Court Reporters at Honorable Reporting

In today’s judicial system, there are a lot of different jobs available and career paths you can take.  One very lucrative position is Stenographer.  Stenographers is at the forefront of the legal system and are always in need for court proceedings, hearings and any time a deposition is needed.  These are people skilled in many different areas such as listening, writing, grammar, punctuation and dictation.  They must be proficient in typing on a stenograph machine.  There can be little error and most stenography or court reporting schools will insist you be cable of recording close to 300 WPM with lighting accuracy.  If this seems semi-redundant to you then read on.

Court reporters and stenographers can be used any time a conversation between two people must be recorded.  This can be done for insurance claims, legal and anytime extra protection is needed for accuracy. 

A stenograph machine is much like a keyboard with the “QWERTY” formatting on the computer keys. The word QWERTY comes from the top row of keys found on the keyboard. The stenograph machine is much like a word processor, but it has the ability to translate the typed words into English. It’s a shorthand approach that gets saved to an SD card file chip. The stenographer must not type with one finger at a time.  This keyboard is set up in a very unique layout.  Look at the example provided.

Court reporters will sometimes utilize the services of someone who can do phonetic writing in a legal format for them to have accurate documents.  These proofreaders are often called a scopist. Primarily, it is the responsibility of the report to triple check for accuracy.

Depending on the zip code where you live, the salary held by one of these professionals can vary greatly.  Entry level for the Miami Dade counties starts at 36K and can go up from there.  If you’re considering a job in this field, it’s best to get certification and training.  An experienced stenographer will be on a higher pay scale.  Also connecting with a strong, firm that’s been in business for a long time that has a good reputation can alleviate trying to get into the courts with little to no experience. Independent contractors can often times be passed up by if they don’t have a strong relationship built with the court.

The lawyer or legal team involved with finding prices for court reporters and stenographers will generally be the person who will pay for the services.  There are things like appearance fees, page fees and additional charges such as additional copies that may need to be made.  There are also extra charges for transcripts so these things can really add up.  Make sure that you are aware of all charges before signing.

Whether you’re looking to hire a stenographer or you’re looking to become one, it’s best to do your research first.  Make sure that you are getting someone that is capable of performing all their duties, at a reasonable cost with the utmost accuracy and you’ll be fine.

If you’re looking to become a stenographer, seek a firm that will help you get paid on time and with very little hassle, and you’ll be fine. In the meantime, we are available to answer any questions you have on stenography. Don’t hesitate to contact our offices for more assistance. Until next time, have a great week. 

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