Seven Ways To Improve Court Reporter Depositions As A Litigator

12 February 2021
 Categories: Business, Blog


One of the tasks you may need to work with a court reporter on is recording depositions of witness testimony. If you are a litigator, you'll be far more successful if you know how to work with a court reporter to improve deposition quality.

The following are seven things you can do to improve court reporter depositions. 

Communicating with the court reporter in advance

Communication is key when it comes to depositions. You can make things go more smoothly and ensure a more successful deposition if you provide pertinent information to the court reporter in advance.

For example, you should provide the court reporter with information like the case number, the correct spelling of important names, and the deposition venue in advance. 

Communicating with the witnesses during the deposition if issues come up

You should prepare your witnesses for the deposition. Make sure they know to speak loudly and clearly. If your witness is difficult to hear during the deposition, remind them to speak up to make the court reporter's job easier. 

Knowing how to open up the record

It's the litigator's job to open up the record at a deposition. You need to do this by stating that the record is open and giving basic case information such as the name of the witness in question.

Remember that it's also your responsibility to close the record by stating that something is "off the record" when necessary. 

Being thoroughly prepared

The more prepared you are for a deposition, the easier the deposition will be for everyone involved. This includes the court reporter. Prepare in advance and show up on time for your deposition. Know all of the points you want to cover in the deposition and all of the questions you want to ask beforehand. 

Familiarizing yourself with court rules

Your court reporter is going to know all of the court rules that are applicable to the deposition in question. You need to know these rules too to get the most out of the court reporter's services. Understand rules such as time limits, permissible objections, and other procedural standards before you get started. 

Not rushing things

If you want the court reporter to be able to maintain an accurate and detailed record, don't rush things. Too many litigators make the mistake of going so fast that the court reporter struggles to keep up. This could detract from the success of a deposition. 

Taking a few breaks throughout the deposition

Regardless of how pressed you are for time, you should always insist that there are a few breaks during a long deposition. This gives everyone — including you as the litigator — a chance to review the events. 

Periodic breaks will help you as well as your witnesses and the court reporter to maintain focus until the deposition is finished.