Testifying can be unnerving for a witness. With these helpful tips from your court reporter, you can prepare the witness on how to create an accurate transcript.
- Avoid non-verbal responses like shaking or nodding the head or saying uh-huh or uh-uh. These types of responses can easily be confused when reading the written transcript at a later date.
- Wait for the entire question to be asked before answering to avoid interrupting. If your attorney has an objection, allow them to place it on the record before answering.
- Speak loudly and clearly so that all participants can hear your answers.
- Offer spellings of any unusual terms or names.
- Gesturing, pointing, and indicating are problematic in a written record. Descriptive words help create a clear record.
- Speak at a reasonable speed. Reporters are certified to take down the record at speeds of 225+ words a minute, but at greater speeds, the accuracy of the record will suffer. Do not take offense if asked to slow your pace.
Attorneys and fellow reporters, download and print a copy of these tips by clicking here. Blank space is provided at the bottom should you wish to add your company information or logo–provided courtesy of Migliore & Associates, Court Reporting and Video Services, and Save Our Court Records.