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Remember when you see a man at the top of a mountain, he didn’t fall there. Anonymous
Court Reporting, Captioning, and CART Providing Jobs
Are there REALLY plenty of court reporting, captioning, and CART providing jobs available? Absolutely, there are! … At least there are for competent,proficient professionals who are realtime writers. I am contacted quite often by court reporters who say, “My work is really slowing down.” What they really mean is: I cannot write realtime, and I cannot compete with realtime writers. Therefore, I don’t receive the more lucrative assignments requiring instantaneous, realtime translation. Those reporters HAVE to upgrade their theory to allow them to be excellent realtime writers, and I have many of them training with my Realtime Writing Program for court reporters, or they may be transitioning to captioning or CART providing. YOU, my Court Reporting and Captioning at Home (CRAH) students, are learning an excellent realtime writing theory, so you will be way ahead of the game. You WILL be excellent realtime writers one day.
Many of you CRAH students have had to put your training aside for a few weeks, or a few months, or even a few years to deal with “life.” And when you return to your training with CRAH, you almost always inquire: Will there still be plenty of court reporting, captioning, and CART positions available when I complete my training? And the answer is (and always has been for the 35 years I have been in this business), yes, absolutely, for those who are the best court reporters, which in today’s market means, realtime writers. The U. S. Department of Labor states court reporting will continue to grow by 14% through 2020 and, of course, realtime writers wil have the BEST job prospects. However,the Dept. of Labor may not be taking into consideration the fact that approximately 25% of all court reporters are Baby Boomers and may choose toretire. That 14% is probably considerably higher. I am aware of some court reporters in their 70s who are still reporting. So it definitely depends on the individual and how much they want to work! (smiles)
Most people think of a court reporter as someone who sits in a courtroom writing trials and hearings all day. And while those are the duties of an “official” court reporter who earns a set salary and who may enjoy benefits such as a paid vacation, paid holidays, 401K, life and health insurance, etc., etc., actually only about 15-20% of all court reporters work as an “official” reporter. Most court reporters freelance, either establishing their own businesses or working for acourt reporting firm or agency. If you choose to establish your own business, CRAH students, we will teach you how to do so. Or perhaps your choice is working for an agency or firm that furnishes you all your assignments in exchange for taking a commission from you, ranging anywhere from 10% to 30%. Generally speaking, 25% is fairly average across the United States. However, this rate varies not only from state to state, but county to county.
Do I have to have a large clientele in order to be successful? Absolutely not! For approximately five years I worked
basically for four attorneys, both Plaintiff and Defendant, handling only medical malpractice cases. After I had
children, I decided to accept only very short, one-hour depositions, so I worked basically for a Plaintiff and Defense attorney handling worker’s compensation cases or accident cases. So again, it doesn’t require a great many lawyers to provide you enough business to keep you busy. It requires a few attorneys who appreciate your work and expediency who employ you on a regular basis.
I have captioning companies contact me often seeking students ready to work. There are employment opportunities in online captioning, offline captioning, internet captioning, stadium captioning, etc., etc. One Canadian company advised me they were a new, startup company, but already had contracts for 70,000 captioning hours.
I have also been contacted by CART providing employers seeking excellent realtime writers. You may not be aware, but CART providing may be provided entirely from your home, just like captioning. It is referred to as “remote” CART providing. You may also be unaware thatyou may obtain employment for captioning and CART regardless of where you reside in the U.S. Some captioners and CART providers accept employment from more than one captioning or CART providing employer. One can reside on the East Coast and work for one or more captioning companies on the West Coast, or in Texas, or Canada. Quit wasting precious practice time on forums, and one of these wonderful careers can be yours, too.
Linda Bland, RMR, RPR,
SSD Enterprises, LLC
Court Reporting and
Captioning at Home
Hello, Students and Colleagues,
We’re all impacted by people throughout our lives, primarily our parents and family and sometimes our friends. However, I want to share with you a wonderful article written about MY instructor. There are so many stories to tell about my instructor, about how she, too, trained students all over the United States in a self-paced program. She was a gentle yet firm instructor, but more importantly, she was a wonderfully motivating teacher. So enjoy this article as I did.
Linda Bland, RMR, RPR, CSR, CPE
Looking Back: Lippert’s presence still felt
Most of her students never knew that Winia was Mrs. Roy Lippert’s given name. But in the 22 years since her death, the name Lippert among court reporting circles has taken an almost mythical status.
Examples can be found on Depoman.com, an online forum for court reporters. A contributor in one string on Lippert compared her to Charlie Brown’s teacher, a character that is never seen and rarely heard.
But for generations of court reporters, she remains a powerful presence.
Karen Morris of Amarillo had this to say about Lippert in that forum: “She and her husband labored tirelessly for their students. They never had children, but all of their students were considered their children and family.
“When I attended their school (in around 1976), tuition was $75 a month,” Morris wrote. “I understand that set tuition lasted into the ’80s. If you couldn’t pay, you stayed anyway. No one was ever turned down. You didn’t have to pay her back. The Lipperts placed court reporters all over the world. Students traveled from all over the United States to attend their school.
“Ms. Lippert is probably the kindest human being I have ever known. She was a true southern belle and loved our profession,” she continued. “Oh, those were the good old days.”
Lippert was the subject of a 1986 feature by Gordon Zeigler who wrote that Lippert’s business school made its local debut in 1925, with court reporting added in 1935.
“The first student I ever trained, Brentz Norman, was the official reporter for the Billie Sol Estes case in Amarillo,” she told Zeigler. “There were people there from all over the globe.”
She and her husband, Roy Lippert, moved to Plainview in 1923. He had been injured in World War I and was told the weather in West Texas would be good for his health.
“I could do stenography and typing and, in Plainview then, that was a must for the lawyers and judges,” she recalled about her first years here. “So I just pioneered court reporting out here.”
Early on, their school was misunderstood.
“They used to ask me, ‘How are you going to get the newspapers to hire all these reporters?’ ”
Initially, she said, court reporters used old shorthand methods to transcribe testimony during court and other legal proceedings. Then they tried the stenotype, which she said was not very efficient. Then in 1950 came the stenograph – a machine that looks like a scaled-down typewriter on stilts.
Lippert went to Chicago in 1936 to learn shorthand from Dr. John Gregg, who invented the Gregg shorthand method. After she graduated with honors from one of his first classes, Gregg give Lippert an autographed picture, an item she treasured for the rest of her life.
One of her students in 1986 pointed out that all of America’s court reporters and court reporting schools trace their history directly to either Lippert or another person who began teaching the trade about the same time in different parts of the country.
Lippert’s own experience in court reporting included work for courts across West Texas during the 1930s through 1950s. Her most memorable trial was a then-rare child-abuse case in Floydada.
“It brought in cowboys from the range,” she recalled. “They were all standing there between me and the judge and had their guns strapped on.”
In the 1950s, the Stenograph company came to her for consultations as they developed a machine that became the standard of the industry. By 1986, most court reporters were still using the Stenograph although a then-new computerized version was gaining popularity, she said. It kept the transcribed court records on both tape as well as paper, and could be plugged into a computer to spew out a laser-printed transcript in minutes.
But she said the newer methods had not replaced the traditional process, which called for a special interpretation of phonetic characters appearing on a long roll of steno paper. “Each time 25 lines goes through the machine,” she said, “it’s $4.50 you make. You might sell 50 copies.”
And her students were always in high demand. “Just recently,” she said, “I received a request for 15 students in one day. I don’t have to go looking for jobs for these students, the jobs come to me.”
For many years the National Shorthand Reporters Association set up an exclusive banquet for Lippert’s students during its annual convention. In 1986, her class included students from Alabama, Florida, Nebraska, West Virginia, Mississippi, New Mexico, Colorado, California and Texas.
In 1987, Lippert was honored by Soroptimist International of Plainview as its first Woman of Distinction.
“In honoring our first Woman of Distinction, Mrs. Lippert was a unanimous choice,” said president Sandi Miller. “Her dedication to providing a quality program to students of all economic levels has been outstanding. Graduates of Lippert’s are in demand everywhere and Mrs. Lippert’s reputation is unequaled.”
A few months earlier, in November 1986, she sold Lippert Court Reporting College to Raul and Yolanda Hernandez. They continued to operate it in Plainview for another three years before relocating to Lubbock in June 1989. In continued for several more years in Lubbock’s Briercroft Office Park before eventually fading from the scene.
Before its move to Lubbock, Lippert’s offered courting reporting, a secretarial program, including administrative secretarial skills, computer processing, defensive driving and a paralegal program.
Hernandez told the Herald that the school’s move to Lubbock came about for the convenience of its 100-odd students, which included 60 from Lubbock. He said the average student took 17-20 months to complete their program, and spent about $4,500 for tuition. The college used four instructors.
Even after selling her school to the Hernandezes, Lippert taught there two more years until shortly before her death in 1988 at age 92. Her husband died in 1975.
Born in Hill County, she grew up in Woodbury and lived in Ranger before her marriage in 1921.
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