How Long Do Court Transcripts Take?

Transcription means taking an audio or video file with spoken words and typing it into a text file (the transcript). Transcription was first created and designed to assist Egyptian kings and their governments in 3400 BCE. Court transcripts offer an official record – a written record of everything said in a trial, which becomes part of the public records.

Having an official transcript of what was said in a court case can be an essential tool for lawyers should they need to refer back to a particular moment in the case. Indeed, court transcripts can be used as evidence in future court cases. Therefore, it’s essential to have access to reliable court transcription services when needed.

Ditto Transcripts offers court transcription services with a range of turn around times. Our court transcriptions are typically completed in 6-10 business days- much faster than a court reporter. However, if you need the job done sooner, we even have rush transcript alternatives that promise completion in as little as four hours.

That said, some projects could need a longer turnaround period. Larger projects or bulk transcriptions frequently fall into this category, especially if the transcription project requires additional resources. In these cases, it is typical to see a turnaround time of one to two weeks.

Why Are Court Transcriptions Necessary?

Today, it’s common for courtrooms of all types (i.e., district courts, federal courts, and even the supreme court) to use audio and video recorders to record the entire proceeding. In some cases, a court reporter (stenographer) may be used to record what the parties say live and in person, but this is becoming a thing of the past. Court reporters cost more than transcriptionists and take as long as 30 days to provide an accurate transcript.

People (i.e., lawyers and judges) rely on court transcripts to know what was said during a trial. Judges and appellate courts frequently depend on certified court transcripts when determining whether to uphold or reject a lower court’s decision.

What Are Certified Court Transcripts?

certified legal transcription

Certified court transcripts are vital because the content could impact the outcome of a case. For a court transcript to be certified, the person who transcribed the audio recording must sign a statement that they listened to and accurately transcribed the legal recording. The certification statement also states that the transcriptionist will appear in court to testify to its authenticity.

For this reason, selecting a transcription company capable of certifying their work is essential.

It’s easy to assume that all transcription companies can certify legal proceedings. However, many companies that advertise legal transcription services aren’t capable of certifying your court transcriptions. And there are a couple of reasons why. Some companies use transcriptionists in foreign countries, and some companies use artificial intelligence software which can’t certify your transcripts for obvious reasons.

Understanding legal terminology, words, and phrases is challenging enough for U.S. citizens. Imagine the difficulty a transcriptionist in another country would encounter if given an actual legal transcription project. Even the most highly skilled American transcriptionist would find it difficult to transcribe a court case conducted in a foreign language.

That is why hiring a transcription company in the U.S. that uses U.S.-based transcribers like Ditto Transcripts who are ready, willing, and able to certify the transcription they produce is critical.

What Sets Court Transcriptionists Apart From Court Reporters?

In the past, lawyers depended on court reporters and the transcriptions they provided, unaware that other transcription options were available.

Court reporters (stenographers) are traditionally licensed to attend trial proceedings and prepare a transcript of what happens during the session. You might think the court reporters’ transcript occurs in real time, but it can take up to 30 days to for them to officially complete their transcripts and turn them in.

Stenographers type in shorthand, then take their work home to convert their “shorthand” into full words and phrases. The stenographer will then proofread the entire document before providing the finished transcript, and this is where the delay in turn around times from court reporters comes in.

The Process Of Acquiring Court Transcription

When broken down into three essential parts, court transcription is a rather easy and straightforward procedure.

Our legal transcription prices typically fall between $1.50 and $5.00 per audio minute. The number of speakers, audio quality, and required turn around times can all affect the cost of your transcription service.

Transcription services costs

We Receive & Transcribe Your Audio File(s)

Once you’re ready to get a court transcript from Ditto Transcripts, you’ll start by uploading your electronic recordings (audio or video files) to our secure portal. At this point, we will assign your file(s) our and complete the first draft.

Reviewing The Document

After the first draft is finished, at least one more person will proofread it for any grammar or spelling mistakes. At Ditto Transcripts, we promise accuracy rates that are at least 99% and constantly aim towards 100%.

We Return To You The Transcription

After everything has been checked and proofread, we will provide a PDF file containing your court transcripts. We can also send your court transcription in one of several digital forms upon request. A printed copy is also available for a small additional fee. Most importantly, we keep a copy of your original transcripts thanks to our safe and secure archiving process. So if your files are ever lost or corrupted, the transcription will still be available from us.

Why Ditto Transcriptions Is Your Best Option To Get Your Transcripts Faster

Law firms frequently request paralegals to transcribe audio. But here’s the thing. A 60 minute file can take an inexperienced paralegal 8 to 10 hours to transcribe, whereas our transcriptionists can accomplish the same file in less than half the time and with 99% accuracy. You have to believe their time would be better spent on the tasks they were trained for.

It’s the same story with court reporters. Court reporters cost more (than court transcriptionists) and take longer. We can get court transcripts completed in less than a day. Call us first for same day (rush transcript) service, as there are aspects to consider when pricing your project.

Ditto Transcripts reserves the right to raise its rates at any time and without notice, owing to factors such as bad audio files, verbatim transcription, and so on. Poor audio quality, in-and-out fading, low speaking voices, muted background noises, speakers from a distance, and so on can all be audio issues.

Before moving forward with your file(s), we will let you know if there are any rate increases in advance.

Contact us at (720) 287 – 3710 for an estimate. We are open M-F,  8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (MST).

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Ditto Transcripts is a U.S.-based HIPAA and CJIS compliant company with experienced U.S. transcriptionists. Learn how we can help with your next project!