All posts by Debbie Dusseljee

Transcript Certificate in Rear

Transcript Certificate for Deposition to Include Completeness & Impartiality Statements

One trend that is popping up within the court-reporting profession in South Carolina is for the court reporter to provide minimal verbiage on the transcript certificate for a deposition.   Whether your record is for the purposes of the presentation of evidence or impeachment, you should expect the testimony you are securing to be reliable, and that trustworthiness is established by the transcript certificate attached by the court reporter before whom the deposition was taken.

Here are two elements we think need to be incorporated into a certificate so that the testimony contained therein is not suspect.

Certificate Language for Completeness of Record

South Carolina Rule 30(c) states, “All objections made at time of the examination to the qualifications of the officer taking the deposition, or to the manner of taking it, or to the evidence presented, or to the conduct of any party, and any other objection to the proceedings, shall be noted by the officer upon the deposition.”

Language that attests to the completeness of the officer’s record should be included in the court reporter’s certificate.  Samples of the elements to be included in the certificate are below.

  • Testimony of the deponent and all objections made at the time of the deposition were recorded stenographically by me and were thereafter transcribed by me or under my direction.
  • The foregoing deposition as typed is a true, accurate, and complete record of the testimony of the deponent.

Transcript Certificate Language for Impartiality

Rule 28 (c) of the South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure says, “No deposition shall be taken before a person who is a relative or employee or attorney or counsel of any of the parties, or is a relative or employee of such attorney or counsel, or is financially interested in the action.”

Here is a sample of the language that should be included by the court reporter in a transcript certificate for a deposition.

  • I certify that I am neither related to nor counsel for any party to the cause pending or interested in the events thereof.

Transcript certificates can be easily overlooked.  Make sure you read the details contained within your court reporter’s transcript certificate.

Discovery Research

Three Discovery Pillars from a Court Reporting Firm

Before you go to trial, it’s important to have the right team in place to support you.  While runners, law clerks, and paralegals are indispensable, one of your greatest allies during discovery is the right court reporting firm.  From court reporters to legal videographers to videoconference hosts, a full service court reporting firm can provide you with critical resources you need during discovery.

Discovery Depositions

A skilled court reporter is an important part of every litigation team during the discovery phase.  Aside from expert writing skills, an experienced court reporter will request that deposition participants not talk over one another or ask for indistinct speech to be repeated so that the final transcript is as accurate as possible.   If deposition participants require instant access to the transcript, realtime court reporting solutions allow text to be displayed, shared, and saved as it is being recorded, even if participants are in other locations.   Your realtime court reporter can also provide you with a realtime rough draft at the end of the deposition if you are not having the text streamed to a device during the testimony.

Legal Videography for Depositions

During discovery, hiring a legal video specialist for your deposition is extremely valuable.  In her article “Video Depositions: Essentials, Resources,”  Tonya Johnson writes, “Outside of the courtroom, video depositions can also be a valuable tool for reference when considering whether to use particular witnesses at trial, and when preparing for the direct- or cross-examination of those witnesses.”   And when used in the courtroom, a video deposition is much more likely to command the attention of a 21st century jury.  A premiere videographer provides not only high-quality synced media that looks great when presented in a courtroom but also provides you with evidence tools to record persuasive testimony through picture-in-picture technology.

Videoconferencing during Discovery

Videoconferencing  allows participants at two or more locations to communicate simultaneously via audio and video transmission.   During discovery, a client may be in one state, a witness in another, and an attorney in a third.  Whether using a videoconferencing room or mobile videoconferencing technology, the ability to communicate securely through a videoconference eliminates expensive travel while making it easier for parties to schedule meetings and depositions during discovery.  Videoconferencing also reduces time out of the law office, which is valuable when preparing for trial.  When a face-to-face virtual meeting is not necessary, a full-service court-reporting company can coordinate a teleconference

When you find yourself in discovery, choosing a one-stop shop for court reporting, legal videography, and videoconferencing is imperative.  CompuScripts Court Reporters can provide your litigation team with all three services in South Carolina and across the country, and we make it easy to schedule by phone or online.  Make CompuScripts a part of your discovery strategy.

Construction Litigation

Construction Litigation Uptick in 2017?

The good news for residential builders in 2017 is that Forbes Magazine expects small but continued growth in new builds during the first half of the year.  The bad news is that increases in residential construction are often followed by increases in construction defect lawsuits, and both homeowners and builders who previously only watched legal drama on television are finding themselves embroiled in construction litigation, whether in the mediation room or the courtroom.
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Stephanie, Deposition Scheduling

Meet Our New Deposition Scheduling Team Member

Meet Stephanie

Our new deposition scheduling and transcript production associate Stephanie Pendergast joins us to kick off 2017. If you are a new client, Stephanie will process your requests for court reporters to cover hearings, trials, or depositions as well as handle the production and distribution of your transcripts and exhibits. If you’re a current client, you will be receiving the same friendly, efficient service with prompt turnaround you’ve come to expect from CompuScripts — with a different accent.
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computer keyboard

Audio Transcription and Electronic Recording

Everyone’s Here But The Court Reporter

If you’ve spent any time in a courtroom recently, you may have noticed an empty seat.  In more and more states, budgetary concerns are replacing court reporters with electronic recording systems (ERS) monitored by court personnel.  In every other way, a trial or hearing may continue normally, but when court is adjourned, the attorney or paralegal may have the added responsibility of finding an experienced legal transcriptionist to produce the proceeding’s audio transcription.
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federal courtroom

Four Courtroom Etiquette Rules for Paralegals

As a trial date approaches, a litigation paralegal performs many invaluable tasks.   While assisting the lawyer, a litigation paralegal calendars dates, organizes briefs, prepares witnesses, and contacts experts.  But his or her duties do not stop at the courthouse door.   Once a trial begins, a paralegal may be called on to assist attorneys from the first row or at counsel’s table, and use of proper courtroom etiquette contributes to a judge or jury’s final decision.  Here are our four courtroom etiquette rules for paralegals.
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CompuScripts Network Partners

Court Reporting Network for Out-of-State Depositions

CompuScripts’ court reporting business is built on relationships and professional competence.   It’s been that way since the start, locally and globally.  Debbie Dusseljee, CompuScripts’ president, was reminded of this recently when she had the privilege of gathering with lifelong friends, many of whom are CompuScripts’ court reporting network partners.

This extraordinary group of thought leaders, skilled professionals, and just good people from around the United States and throughout the world range from independent court reporters, firm owners, or legal videographers, to legal vendors.  These leaders have been our allies for years in bringing you the best practices in the court reporting and legal industries.
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Restricted Disclosure Evidence

Litigation Restricted Disclosure

Its Impact on Your Transcript

Depositions can carry restricted disclosure designations, such as “Confidential” in lawsuits involving patents and trade secrets.  In complex litigation, attorneys use protective orders to keep sensitive information sheltered from the public and business competitors.  In today’s legal environment, a court reporter, videographer, and court reporting service may be asked to sign a binding non-disclosure document.  Some restricted disclosure designations impact a transcript’s final form more than others. Continue reading

accurate transcript

Three Tips for Accurate Deposition Transcripts

Some might think the court reporter, who writes verbatim what is said in the courtroom or deposition setting, magically produces an accurate transcript.  Grammar is daunting.  Transcription of a verbatim record is not like creative writing, when the author can attend to syntax and choose the right words.  Continue reading

local business

Five Reasons to Locally Schedule a Court Reporter

 

ARE YOU a locavore?  Throughout our country, people are rediscovering the benefits of buying locally produced foods.  They are generally fresher, tastier, and more nutritious than foods shipped from distant states and foreign countries. Being a locavore is also good for our local economies.  Buying directly from family farmers helps those small businesses generate profits, as well as their local employees’ incomes, that are then available to be spent within our communities on other goods and services, some of which incur State, County, City, and local sales taxes that fund public projects and governmental services.  Rethink Local explains how localism builds communities that are healthy and sustainable. Continue reading