Questions to Ask when Booking Legal Video for Court Reporters

1. What audio options do you offer?

Virtually all legal video firms provide their court reporter with some kind of audio recording of a video deposition. If you have a preference as to format, e.g. WAV or mp3 files, standard cassette or direct feed into your laptop, make sure the firm can handle that. Remember, if you want a direct audio feed, it’s best to arrive at the video deposition a few minutes ahead of time and do a test-run with the videographer. This is true even if you’ve worked successfully with the same videographer in the past, because any changes to your laptop configuration or software can interfere with the connection.

2. Do you have an office manager?

It is very helpful to work with a firm that has a full-time office manager to immediately confirm future video depositions and to troubleshoot any last minute time or destination changes. This person can also confirm early set-up arrangements for the videographer, ensuring depositions start on time. Finally, an office manager with a stable of contacts is your best bet in finding a videographer when your attorney suddenly decides he/she wants video for the deposition that starts in two hours.

3. How many videographers do you employ?

A larger firm may indicate a more client-oriented and, thus, successful approach. More importantly, more videographers mean more flexibility and the ability to handle those multiple 11th hour video depositions. Conversely, a one-person shop may be available for one day of depositions in a particular case, but not for subsequent days.

4. Will you represent us?

Many videographers will be willing to represent themselves as working with your firm, e.g. my name is Herman with Joe’s Court Reporting Service (as opposed to Herman’s Legal Video Service). They may also be willing to extend you an industry discount and let you handle all post-production.

5. Will you fill-in my paperwork and abide by my preferences?

If you need special paperwork filled out or end product shipments via a particular carrier, say, be sure and ask if the firm is willing to meet these requests. If it’s in your guidelines and the legal video firm accepts the job that should be an indication they can meet your needs, but it never hurts to confirm.