The Cal Dep Difference
- Experienced Realtime Court Reporters
- Last Minute Scheduling
- Secure Online Office, Scheduling and Document Repository
- Personal service that meets or exceeds our clients’ needs.
- Our best assets are our clients. Our mission is to provide professional services that meet or exceed our clients’ expectations.
- We believe the difference between the competition and Cal Dep are the court reporters we work with. Their personal commitment to excellence is unparalleled.
- The professionalism and congeniality the office provides clients is yet another reason to choose Cal Dep.
California Trial and Hearing Services
Being involved in the discovery process gives court reporters and reporting firms a window into the case in dispute and provides a working knowledge as to the vocabulary and issues involved in the case. Working with the parties in discovery gives the reporters an opportunity to learn about and be more responsive to the needs of the parties and the knowledge achieved as discovery progresses into the trial and provides the trial reporters valuable working knowledge that reporters not involved in the discovery process would have with our California Trial and Hearing Services.
The issues and vocabulary during discovery are always a learning process. Technical terms of art, professional witnesses, both expert witnesses or scientific witnesses that the court and jury rely on to make their decision, utilize a knowledge base that is usually outside the general word knowledge used in the day-to-day litigation. Word knowledge is a decided advantage during the taking of trial testimony. The split-second pause to write an unfamiliar word can mount up over time. Knowledge of the trial issues and word usage is an advantage that benefits the entire trial process and boosts the seamless taking of testimony and providing excerpts or daily transcripts often requested during trials.
In addition to the real-time text being sent to the parties in the courtroom, the court reporter can stream the text file to a remote location, for instance, to an upcoming expert witness to better prepare the witness for their testimony. It could be streamed to a consultant on other issues in the trial or to co-counsel for an upcoming motion during the trial with our California Trial and Hearing Services.
Trials have more pieces than depositions, marking and receiving of exhibits into evidence, opening statement, pre-trial hearings, bench conferences, motions in limine, the evidentiary portion of the trial, closing arguments and then the jury instructions – and there are other events that can take place – and then the verdict. Of course, following the verdict, there are post-trial motions as well. In the end, if one of the parties is dissatisfied with the result(s), they can file an appeal.
Familiarity with the trial process and the preparation of transcripts, both during the trial and if there is an appeal, are an added value to the parties. Assembling a trial transcript with witness and exhibit indexes can be quite a job. Short trials are simpler, requiring less complexity with witness and exhibit indices. The longer, more complex trials and appeals require that reporters if there are more than one, work together to coordinate their page and exhibit indices.
Readback of testimony is one aspect of a jury trial that court reporters simply don’t do in a deposition. Court reporters in depositions are asked to read back at any time but seldom do court reporters in the deposition setting have to read back a witness who was on the stand for an entire day or longer. Trial readback requires that the court reporter read forward in their file, whether it be a note file or computer file on a screen to ensure that they don’t read back questions where objections have been interposed to the question and where the court has sustained the objection. Court reporters who provide realtime to the parties during a trial often read back from their real-time text file as opposed to their actual note file.
We share our knowledge with our competitors or other court reporters who end up reporting a trial where we are involved with discovery and do not end up with the trial. We create what is called a master word index. We take all of the depositions that we are involved in – and if counsel sees fit, we can also include other depositions performed by other court reporting firms – and we put the ASCII files into our database and create a master word list for the court reporter(s) involved in the trial. There is no charge for this particular service among our California Trial and Hearing Services.
Hearings, arbitrations, mediations, meetings, board of supervisor meetings, retirement board hearings, medical hearings, physician disciplinary hearings, business meetings, legislative hearings, senate hearings, union labor hearings, public agency hearings – to name a few – are assignments we cover and are familiar with. Hearing work, unlike trial work, is a much different environment than the more formal setting of a courtroom. Each assignment has its own unique way of being administered and managed.
The court reporters that cover hearing-type matters possess a substantial amount of experience and expertise in the court reporting profession. The subject matter in hearing work is very broad and can be terminology that is basic or very complex.
Of course, hearing court reporters provide all the same services that our deposition and trial reporters provide, such as, daily transcripts, rough draft transcripts, transcripts, linked exhibits, if any are attached to the record. Those exhibits are the same linked, searchable exhibits we attach to deposition transcripts. The hearing reporter can stream the real-time text file to upcoming witnesses or consultants, insurance adjusters, consultants, expert witnesses or co-counsel.
If you have any questions on the California Trial and Hearing Services we offer, please contact us via the California Deposition Services Contact page and we’ll be happy to answer your inquiry. Additionally, if you are interested in learning more about the court reporting process, this blog has information you may find valuable.