Job expectations and salaries for Job expectations and salaries for Court reporters

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Job expectations and salaries for Job expectations and salaries for Court reporters

Court reporters are responsible for compiling a written copy of any conversation in the courtroom or outside the courtroom that is relevant to the case. A typical court reporter must be accurate and detail oriented. Given the weight of the responsibility, court reporters tend to make a very good income, depending on education, experience and region.

Types of Court Reporters

The conventional court reporter is a stenographer who types every word verbatim during a given court case. Mistakes are not allowed, since it is incumbent on the court reporter to provide an accurate record of what transpired. Court reporters may make a recording of the case, which the reporter has to edit and prepare, and some court reporters use a voice method, which allows them to repeat everything that is being said without being heard by bystanders. Some court reporters are hired by the state whereas others are freelance. The court reporter must be present during the entire case to record the proceedings.

Education for Court Reporters

Court reporters need special certification to enter their profession, and these courses depend on the type of court reporting studied. Stenographers require a different kind of certification than voice reporters, and in some states, court reporters are required to be notary publics. Most certificates are earned in vocational schools and a course may take a year or two. Some states require court reporters to pass certain exams or to receive a certification of merit. The American Association of Electronic Reporters and Transcribers can certify those who have taken courses and may also be an excellent job resource.

Job and Salary Expectations

Currently, the number of jobs in court reporting still outweighs the number of applicants, so job prospects look good in this area through 2014. Salary varies widely according to certification and experience. The median salary for court reporters is about $40,000, with the median range between $30,000 and $60,000. The bottom 10 percent earned around $23,000 while the top ten percent earned $80,000. Official transcribers earn a regular salary while freelancers charge by the page. Many who work as official court reporters may take extra work as freelance court reporters.

Who can be a Court Reporter?

Court reporters require, first and foremost, accuracy and honesty. All of the information depends on them, so they must be very ethical. One reason there are so many certifications required to become a court reporter is because of the tremendous responsibility they carry. Court reporting is a rewarding career for those who have a good ear and can create a transcript accurately and efficiently.

Schools Offering Court Reporting Courses: