legislation, Uncategorized

Insurers Dictating Use of Contracted Court Reporters is Against MA Law

Law firms who need to sever long-standing relationships with their court reporting agency of choice because an insurance company dictates who they must use is against the law.

According to M.G.L.C. 221, S. 91D(b), 

“Contracts entered into pursuant to the practice of court reporting, not related to a particular case or reporting incident, between a court reporter or any person with whom a court reporter has a principal and agency relationship and an attorney at law, party to an action, or party having a financial interest in an action shall be prohibited.”  

As a court reporting agency with over 50 years serving our clients in all areas of litigation, we are no longer surprised to get calls from counsel complaining about:

  • Use of court reporters they have no relationship with who can’t provide the services they’re familiar with
  • Hidden fees
  • Bundled bills with no itemization
  • Higher costs for opposing counsel

Don’t let insurance companies dictate who you use. Insist on trusted court reporters you have a long-standing relationship with. 

The Commissioner of Insurance, Gary Anderson, would like to hear your complaints. He may be reached at gary.d.anderson@state.ma.us, or call 617-521-7794.

Uncategorized, Technology, Litigation Support, Software

Leveling the Playing Field for the Hearing Impaired

Navigating through the legal process is hard enough, but imagine being a party to a case and being unable to hear well enough to know what’s being said.  If your client is deaf or suffering from significant hearing loss, this puts him — and you as his attorney — at a clear disadvantage. 

Court reporters can help!  Realtime technology is being requested these days not only in deposition settings but in classrooms, meetings, and interviews.  Did you know that closed captioning on TV is provided by a court reporter?


                     Approximately 15% of American adults (37.5 million) aged 18 and over                report some trouble hearing.  ~ NIH


Certified court reporters have the skills necessary to provide realtime for you and your client.  Having the testimony streaming live on an iPad for viewing is a game-changer.  It’s like having a personal interpreter on site.  Your client will no longer have to rely on lip reading or worry about positioning himself close to a speaker.  There will be fewer interruptions and less stress and fatigue for your client.  The court reporter will also provide a clean rough draft at the end of the day.

Give your client immediate digital access to the spoken word.  Let realtime technology in the hands of our gifted professionals take the guesswork out of the conversation, and let your client actively participate in the process with confidence and peace of mind.

Uncategorized, Technology, Litigation Support

The Positive Impact Realtime Can Have on Your Practice

More and more attorneys are relying on the benefits realtime can provide. Realtime is an instantaneous feed from a reporter’s laptop to an attorney’s laptop, iPad, or smart device.  Specialized software allows the attorney to make notes, mark text, and then download the file at the end of the day.  Attorneys can scrutinize the testimony as it is being given, and a draft provided by the court reporter at the end of the day can give them a head start on preparing for future depositions or briefs.


Realtime is our profession’s gold standard


Realtime has other uses you may not have thought of: 

  • Many participants find that visual access to realtime can help participants organize their thoughts
  • Realtime is a helpful tool for those who speak English as a second language. Oftentimes, non-native English speakers can read English better than they can speak it.  This service could ultimately help them understand the spoken word.
  • Those who are hearing impaired appreciate an opportunity to revew a question before answering. 

Preparation is key.

Although you may have been working on a case for many months, or perhaps years, the court reporter does not have the benefit of knowing what the case is about.  This is why reporters ask for word lists beforehand so they can input the subject matter, names, and terminology into their software. This preparation is key to minimizing any interruptions and to your receiving the cleanest realtime feed possible.

Insist on today’s tech-savvy court reporters who provide realtime. 

Litigation Support, Technology, Uncategorized

“What new technology does is create new opportunities to do a job customers want done.” Tim O’Reilly

Doris Wong, while President of the National Court Reporters Association from 1980 to 1981, took a bold move and embraced computer aided-transcription.  That decision dramatically changed the profession.  Where once court reporters manually typed their transcript, the newly developed software translated their steno notes into English.  As technology advanced, new products such as compressed transcripts with word index have become indispensable to our clients, and services like realtime have become our profession’s gold standard.

Going digital means better products and services with more versatility. Digital means interactive realtime and file formats which include ASCII TXT files, compressed transcripts with an interactive word index in PDF, standard PDF files, and PTX.

We research and invest in the latest technologies that make sense to the end user – our clients.  Always pushing the envelope, a few years back we were one of the first firms in the nation to utilize just-released software to provide iCVNet realtime services over the Cloud for a daily copy arbitration that involved over 40 counsel participating from all around the country.  Read More

 

StenotypeMachines

 

Steno machines have gone from a paper feed to electronic cassette, floppy disk, and then serial connections.  Today steno machines are connected to laptops and tablets via USB cables or wirelessly.

 

Software, Uncategorized

A neuropychologist explains what’s so special about the skill of a court reporter.

Here is an excerpt from a neuropsychologist’s deposition which we think you will find very interesting!

The neuropsychologist is describing the intricacies of the human brain.

Neuropsychologist:  May I give an example of this?

Counsel:  Sure.

Neuropsychologist:  Okay.  If you look — and the example is this: Our brains are a miracle.  Okay.  They’re a miracle that needs to be protected.  And if you look at the court reporter right now, as an example, okay, this is a miracle in progress happening right before your eyes.

Brain

Let me just explain what she needs to do.  I am speaking, so the information has to come in through her ear into her temporal lobe, and it has to go log itself into the language center. She has to be able to comprehend what I’m saying.

Then it has to get rerouted to the prefrontal cortex where it has to hold — she has to be able to hold the information, because, you know, I continuously talk so she has to hold it.  Right?

Then she has to analyze it, integrate it and synthesize it.  Then it has to go back to the cerebellum and she has to be able to execute this, and she has to be able to then convert my words into those little squiggly marks.  Have you ever seen court reporters have little squiggly language things?

So she has to convert it into a different language, and the white matter tracks allows her to reroute all of this information simultaneously without effort.  Okay.

We take our brains for granted.  She’s sitting here.  I’m probably talking too fast for her, but she’s able to do this simultaneously. Seamlessly.  Okay.

No animal on the planet can do this.  All right.  That’s why I believe court reporters will never be replaced.  Because no technical — no technology could replace the beauty of that brain and the miracle of  that brain.  And that’s why your brain should always be protected and you should take care of it.

 

Uncategorized, Technology, Litigation Support, Software, Malware

Technology for Litigators

Tips, tricks, and information about client-focused litigation support services, technology, and issues you face on a day-to-day basis.

Doris O. Wong Associates, Inc., was the first court reporting firm in Boston to embrace computer-aided transcription back in 1977.

 

Certifications, Uncategorized

How qualified is your court reporter?

Doris O. Wong Associates employs nationally certified reporters who have 25-45 years of experience.  Unlike other agencies, we only hire certified reporters, as we believe that credentials attest to their competence and reflect their commitment to the profession.  Our reporters have embraced our culture of quality transcripts, exemplary service, and the need to embrace leading-edge technology.  We appreciate your business and stand ready to assist you with all of your court reporting needs.

A court reporter who has earned NCRA certifications has been tested for speed and accuracy.  All court reporters hired by Doris O. Wong Associates, Inc., are NCRA certified. Just as clients seek your expertise based on your credentials, experience, and reputation, our clients demand the same. 

Court Reporter Cartoon

 

It’s no laughing matter.  You rely on court reporters to hear every word, to prepare an accurate record of the proceedings, and to meet your deadline.  We feel the weight of this responsibility on a daily basis and remain committed to providing the best services possible.