Hi everybody. Thank you for joining us again,
if you've been in the previous sessions
or this is your first session.
This next discussion is
with two panelists I'm very excited to have.
Their names are Mark Ivey,
who is CEO of E-Depositions,
and Michael McDonner, who is
president of Kentuckiana Court Reporters,
as well as Milestone Reporting.
This session is going to touch
upon some of the topics we covered earlier,
but also from the agency owner perspective
and also from more of the attorney perspective
and the practicality of some of
the changes that's happening not only with COVID,
but as we move further down the line post-COVID to
changes in digital reporting overall.
Michael, Mark, thank you very much for joining us today.
Happy to be here.
Thank you. Why don't we get into our next slide, please.
We're going to have
about five topics we're going to cover.
Mike talks about a current normal versus a new normal,
which I agree with, because all we
have today is what we currently know.
Ways you could drive
digital reporting in practice, particularly with COVID.
What the future may look like,
some of the challenges there.
How to conduct digital depositions during COVID,
more around the remote.
Mark Ivey has input in the way he does it in his state.
Educating and training attorneys.
We've touched upon this briefly,
but Michael's actually delivered CLEs around this.
With that, let's go to the next slide.
So it's a different question than before.
We talked about a new normal earlier
and we talked about it in a broad future.
But right now, we have a current
normal in practice due to COVID-19.
What I'd like to do is just put up
the next slide, and we'll start with Mike.
Where do the attorneys stand with digital depositions and
proceedings in terms of
remote proceeding in terms of COVID, pre and post?
Well, obviously there's a difference of opinion.
I've been a big stickler for the current
normal or the new normal.
I know that's we're going against maybe the trend.
About 10 years ago, I did practice law as
a medical malpractice defense attorney
and a variety of other litigation.
I still have a lot of, obviously, friends
and colleagues from
that time, and what I can tell you is
that attorneys whose practice is primarily litigation,
they don't see this as
a permanent setting for
how they're going to conduct depositions in the future.
The most effective way to examine
someone or cross-examine someone is in-person.
Obviously, there's lots of social signaling that goes on
between humans that just
doesn't come across in a video conference.
Quite frankly, there's a lot of attorneys
who want to intimidate
and make their presence known in
a deposition without crossing any type of line.
But you just can't do that when the person that you're
examining is sitting in the comfort of their home,
sipping coffee in their slippers or whatever else.
It's just different.
What I'm hearing from a lot of
our litigators is they're still trying to
hold out hope that they
can take critical witnesses in person.
Right now, they're simply doing a lot of
the rudimentary witnesses that they don't
perhaps care as much about or find as important.
I would say, any of the serious litigators,
they're going to go back to in-person depositions.
That's my opinion.
But people who take a few here and there,
some of the litigators where it's
almost a commodity, like worker's comp in most states,
they seem much more receptive
to this being a permanent solution.
So I think a serious percentage of it will remain remote.
That's my experience.
Mark, you may have a slightly different
opinion from your experience?
It's almost a little bit the same opinion.
What we've found on our end is that there's a resistance
from attorneys to do
the Zoom or video conference depositions.
Much for what we just heard is, it's not in-person.
You're not seeing the nonverbal communication that you
usually see in face-to-face.
Also, there's attorneys that
like the home court advantage.
They like to have somebody come to their office,
and it's more on their terms and on their turf.
There's part of that that's being pushed back.
We have some of our clients that
early on saw what was coming down
the pipeline as far as
the coronavirus, how it was taking place.
I actually have one attorney that in January
he'd contacted me about doing
video conference depositions, and he
saw that in the near future
in-person depositions were going to be limited.
He was way ahead of the curve.
I didn't think it was going to be as
serious as he said it was,
but he saw what was coming,
and he was one of the early adopters.
What part that we found is,
at least on my end,
I've seen much more of a push by plaintiff attorneys to
get going on remote depositions and
more of a resistance from defense attorneys.
I think that's just because
defense attorneys can push things back
a little bit more and plaintiff attorneys
are trying to push things forward.
There's been a little bit of an internal battle I've seen
between attorneys of trying to get stuff scheduled,
trying to get video conference depositions going,
but they're getting pushback from
the other side, and
it seems like it's mostly defense attorneys.
I think with the courts keeping everything pushed back,
at least in our area,
we don't know when the courts are going to open back up.
We don't know when jury trials
are going to start back up,
but cases keep stacking up, and we're
getting to a critical point where I think
this new normal of doing
video conference depositions is going
to force people's hands to just start doing them.
Thank you for that. Let's go
to the next slide because that ties into this.
There's a necessity to same room
and practice per Mike,
and Mark agrees with that to an extent.
There's procedural limitations we used to have
on that, perhaps, and practice preferences.
But given that this is the current normal, and you
talked about defense attorneys okay with delaying things,
whereas plaintiffs' attorneys may not,
what's getting them, from
your perspective, to build trust? Because you do
have to deliver these remote, you're delivering
quite a bit remote and digitally.
What's building trust with them from
your perspective? Mark, we'll start with you.
That's the big piece in digital depositions or
doing things differently that
we've battled the whole time.
Mike has a little bit different story,
where he has a more of a hybrid of
court reporting and digital, and we're full digital.
So we've always been bucking
the trend of doing stenography and stuff.
I've been in this business for
seven years now, and I will tell you
that trust has been
the hardest thing to build with attorneys.
Because for 50 years prior to going digital,
that's all attorneys have done is had
a stenographer in the room
typing next to them. It brings comfort.
That's what they're used to,
and when you change that and
you go to just recording things and they
can't see somebody actively
participate in the deposition,
they have a little bit of distrust there.
I think with video conferencing,
that trust is even more important.
Attorneys are looking to people
that understand the process,
they understand the technology,
and that if there's issues that arise,
that depositions can be stopped and things can be fixed.
The trust factor is big, and I don't
know if I can really speak to this as much as Mike
as far as a court reporting side goes
with the video conference depositions,
but there has been,
from our experience with our client base,
a little bit of, I don't want
to say it's trust, but hesitancy.
They're worried that everybody in a remote location,
is the record going to be protected?
Is the record going to be clearly recorded?
Is this something that they can use down
the road in a court proceeding
or a motion or anything like that?
The trust part is big right now.
I think that's one of
the biggest pieces that we're working on right now
is informing our clients that
we're able to do this and they need to trust the process.
Go ahead, Mike.
Yeah. It would almost help defining
sometimes what digital reporting
is, and of course it's a lot of different things.
But for us, before COVID,
it was a court reporter who is simply using
digital technology rather than stenographic technology
to create a transcript.
That reporter is not simply recording,
they're also actively taking
tag files and they're able to do
playbacks and a number of other things
just like a stenographer would.
The shift to remote doesn't necessarily help us,
it almost creates a new line of
problems in that if people saw them,
if they had problems with their Zoom calls,
and then they said, Well,
that's because it's digital, then it gives
us a black eye we didn't have before.
So what we did for probably the
first month-and-a-half to two months
is every deposition would
have two people on it the entire time.
One person whose sole job was like maybe Danielle's
here to make sure that
everything goes right with the Zoom feed,
all of the mics are working,
all the audio's good,
all the video is good.
They help with internet problems,
and then the court reporter's solely
focused on court reporting.
Now we've shifted to a process where we have
one person who's a Zoom specialist or a Webex specialist
who starts the room up,
make sure everything's working
well, and then they step away from it,
but they're available to be called back
in to help as you go so
that we get a smooth of a process as possible.
But I guess to your point, Tony,
is that they're doing something new and it's
with new technology that they didn't want to do before,
and that at least opens
people's minds to no longer being trapped in the idea of,
I have to have a stenographer or I have to have Ruth,
who I've used for 30 years.
They'll start to trust technology more in general,
as long as it's done correctly.
My bad. Thank you both very much for that,
and let's go to the next question, which is here.
This is more about driving it in practice itself,
and we've previously discussed
some of this in prep to this call.
Can we go to the next slide?
As business owners, looking at
deposition growth, Mark, you're all digital,
Mike, you guys are digital, and
you have some other businesses with that, as well,
but we may have some agencies that are
looking to make a transition and
they're not really there yet.
Depositions as percentage of
all transcript volume based upon
some statistics we're going to show you later,
and that you know represent the majority of
the market out there or serviceable proceedings.
Digital court reporting is
a smaller percentage of that still.
However, over the next three years,
that's going to increase.
The growth we see
is going to be driven by a couple of factors,
and we've discussed this before,
continued attrition and
reduction in stenographic community,
technology improvements, pressure on cost,
faster turnaround time.
Both of you have gotten to very high levels
of competitiveness and success
with your respective businesses with digital.
What do you think the growth is going to
be in terms of digital reporting,
where it just becomes another form of
court reporting over the next several years?
Do you see it accelerating now with
COVID, or does it not really matter at this point?
Well, for us, the only thing that slows us down
from expanding digital growth
is walls and barriers
that prohibit their entry into the marketplace.
Because everywhere we go,
once we enter the marketplace,
we're at a competitive advantage.
We can train people faster.
We get people from
a wider variety of demographic population.
It takes a certain personality to
want to learn shorthand,
which is like learning a second language,
then how to type it super fast.
So you get a lot of different personalities involved,
and it makes them easy to work with,
and we can perform where we
generate a transcript that's accurate,
that is completed faster than a
traditional stenographic system, and more affordably.
The only barrier for us to entering
marketplace is it's statutory in nature,
at least in my experience so far.
But there is always room for improvements in technology.
Obviously the ability to transcribe faster,
which Verbit's been very helpful to
us in a significant portion of our business,
and just the ability to capture really great audio,
obviously, and have good competent reporters.
Yeah. To tag along that,
there's actually, in the chat
I just read real quick, somebody brought up trust in
the training side of stuff, and
that kind of goes into what Mike's saying.
For us it's really important to have
competent people that are recording depositions.
Attorneys need to be comfortable with
the fact that the person that's
recording the deposition, one,
understands the process, two,
understands the rules of civil procedure in
regards to recording a deposition,
and understands how important making
sure every aspect of
the deposition is recorded without any issues.
All it takes is one question in
a deposition not to be recorded
the right way and that could
be the most important question in the whole deposition.
It's training people to
understand the importance of depositions.
In our side of the business,
we haven't looked at trying to take people off
the streets and train them in this process.
We did that in the beginning and it just didn't work.
We needed to try and find people that understood
the legal aspects of what a deposition is.
A lot of our digital reporters are trained
professionals in the sense that they're all paralegals.
They've either worked for law firms for
multiple years in litigation,
or they have a good education in
the legal field as a paralegal.
We look to try and create that trust and being able
to have a great record by putting somebody
in the brim that understands the whole process
and understands the technology
that they're sitting in front of, what Mike said.
Yeah. I want to touch on that, too,
because I didn't see the question
and I think it's a good one.
I think there's some misconception that people are pulled
off the street and just go in
with a tape recorder or something.
If that's what we were doing, we would've gone out of
business a long, long time ago.
The person asking the question said there's
a licensing board who will pull
a reporter's license if they don't do well.
Well, I believe in markets.
If we didn't produce an accurate verbatim transcript
in a group of
professionals who communicate with one
another daily, we'd go out of business.
Nobody's going to use a court reporter who can't report.
The reality is that it is very accurate.
I would say about 75-80 percent of
our court reporters hold
at least a four-year degree from
a state college or better.
We're not pulling
people out of the community college,
not that there's anything wrong with that.
But there's training.
It can be done faster because you're not
learning how to type a second language,
you're learning how to use resources that we
all grow up using now in terms of computers.
But if you're not doing it right,
you won't last long.
Just to add to that real quick, too, Mike,
I spent a lot of time before I started this business,
before I ever recorded a deposition,
and I spent a lot of time talking to judges and attorneys
in my area about the record.
One of the judges that I met with,
he was a senior judge,
and he was the one that told me that,
Look, my juries are changing.
My juries are people that are
walking into the courtroom that had been born and
raised with iPhones in their hands and things like that.
They're technology-savvy people.
Providing a technology-savvy deposition in
a court proceeding has more impact than a transcript.
To your point of the accuracy and things like that
on our end, when we recorded deposition digitally,
the audio-video recording is the official record.
A transcript that's created from that recording is
just an aid to the official record.
It sits better with the courtroom. Again,
it's training the right people and make
sure that the recording's done properly.
Great. Thank you both for that, and
I appreciate you pushing that out because that
adds to a question on the changing role of how you
have to deliver with digital reporting, and
stenographic as well for other agencies, is,
if you look on the left,
this is the current normal.
We came into this with
a proposed shortage and
attrition in the stenographic market.
Mark, you've talked about in the past
how it's difficult to some markets to
get certain proceedings fulfilled for depositions.
And now, since February,
we have five additional layers
of complexity we all have to deal with.
Not just in legal, but across the board.
We've had the crisis response,
how to be a rapid change in the courts to
keep the courts moving for certain proceedings,
reporting agencies, how to
adapt the potential economic downturn.
Now we're looking at phase mitigation,
reopening. Some states may
saw an ongoing virus suppression and reemergence.
We all like to be back in the same room.
Some states we may,
some states we can't.
Within a few months, we may have an
effective anti-viral. We just don't know,
but this is the current normal.
What in your mind is our ability to service with
digital and other deposition
needs, changes to live remote deposition,
a potential of backlog of cases,
increasing demand, and more proceedings?
Is the industry prepared to handle it?
Enough people trained in remote,
or enough people trained to handle the volume?
Given all this, where is digital
situated to be a potentially good response mechanism?
From my perspective, if
you need to add court orders quickly,
you can obviously train them faster than you
can train a stenographer.
Stenographer school generally is two years minimum.
Some people take six years, may also take eight.
So it's obviously something that can be done much faster.
The other thing I would say is that
our digital court reporters take
a deposition, at least one every single day.
They're working at least eight hours every single day.
Our stenographers generally like to
take 2-3 depositions a week.
You have some that are work horses that
do more, you have some that do less.
Digitals can be helpful in that they
both can be trained faster to add them
on and they can take
a higher volume of work in my experience.
Mark, anything you want to add?
Yeah. Again, coming from this from
the full digital perspective,
I've been paying attention to the marketplace
for the last seven years.
There is a shortage of court reporters that is happening.
I've talked about it in
some LinkedIn articles that I've done.
We've had experiences with
certain law firms trying to go out of
state and not being able to find a court reporter
because they're not available.
I think that what's
going on with the marketplace right now,
there's going to have to be a shift or a push
to handle the volume that's coming.
I know everybody's had a slowdown at a certain point,
but things are starting to pick back up.
My concern is that the marketplace is going to have
more demand than there is services available.
But this industry isn't
something that somebody on the street
is looking at saying,
Hey, what if we got into the digital deposition market?
This change is going to have to come
on the side of who's already in
the marketplace of transferring
or moving from stenographic to digital,
or breaking an arm off and going digital.
But this isn't an industry that
people are paying attention to right now,
and there is going to be
some demand issues I foresee in the near future.
Thank you. Next slide, please.
Mark, you touched upon this in some of
our prep discussions, particularly around Nevada.
What we heard from other people in
previous presentations is, obviously we're
seeing some changes to the civil rules and
procedures to allow remote notary and others.
Is it going to be permanent?
There's always been ways not to have to
be in the same room for a proceeding.
What's your take from where you
sit and your state in Nevada?
Well, Nevada, in 2005 they changed
the rules of civil procedure to mimic
the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure,
which is, you can record a deposition via sound.
It was sound, sound and visual, or stenographic.
They just changed the language in
this last legislative session to say audio,
audio-video, or stenographic, and that it just
needs to be recorded in front of
somebody that can administer an oath.
They do have a rule in Nevada,
it's a stipulation rule that
if all parties stipulate, a deposition
could be recorded in front of anybody.
Doesn't matter who it is as
long as they all stipulate to it.
But as far as my business goes,
my Bible is the Rules of Civil Procedure.
That's how we record.
That's how we create our end product.
There's certain things that we have to do to provide to
attorneys and courts that fits those rules.
In Nevada we're just wide open right now
to record in any manner that we want.
I was briefly talking to Mike before.
We've done some work in California,
but California is a stipulation state.
You have to get parties to
stipulate to recording non-stenographically,
and the rules divert or favor stenographic deposition.
So I think if there's enough demand on the marketplace,
attorneys are going to have to push their legislatures to
adapt new rules so they can get depositions done.
I see, in the future, everything's
going to be done digitally. That's my opinion.
Mike, anything you want to add?
In terms of rules we've seen it all.
The slide here is accurate.
Our core markets are Kentucky,
Colorado, Florida, and the surrounding regions.
Kentucky and Colorado have
temporarily adopted that
standard language that everyone is
about notarial acts, and it has to be audio-visual,
and the recording has to be maintained for 10 years.
Florida has a constant renewal of a Supreme Court order.
I think it's up to us as people in
the industry, and certainly organizations like the AAERT,
Speech to Text Institute,
the NCRA, to lobby their states to go ahead and put
a permanent rule into place where those don't exist
so that these practices can continue.
Because even if we get a vaccine,
who knows when that will be,
there's still going to be a certain percentage
of the population that simply isn't
comfortable sitting in a room with
a stranger, and that's going to
happen for a long, long time.
the immunocompromised, and a lot of those people
make up our lawyers and our experts.
So some type of permanent solution will have to happen.
Okay, let's go to the next slide, please.
It's a little bit about more fulfillment,
but from your perspective.
Next slide, please.
We've talked a lot about these digital tools,
people adopting the [inaudible] , but they're
not without their challenges.
In our previous discussion, Mark and Mike,
you talked about it's not exactly the same,
it's a different fulfillment,
but there are some challenges
to it and why there is a preference for the same room.
So, Mike and Mark, and then we'll start with Mike.
Mike, you being a former attorney,
can you give us some of
your challenges just from
a practice perspective with using some of these tools,
doing remote live and
how you work around that with the attorneys?
There's a lot of different ones. For me personally,
what would be very frustrating is just trying to
handle large volumes of records.
Certainly in medical malpractice cases,
there are a whole lot of medical records that you're
asking experts and treating
nurses and doctors
about, and that's going to become extremely cumbersome.
It's cumbersome enough in person.
So you really have to make
sure that they plan adequately ahead of time.
We tell everybody to go through and label
every possible document they could use,
put it all in one folder on their desktop,
deposition of Joe Smith or whatever.
That way they don't risk opening
attorney-client communication or something else
that's concerning during the deposition
while they're trying to share exhibits.
Obviously they need to learn how to use
all the annotation tools, and
we provide all of that training to
our court reporters and our clients.
But, again, the other big problem for me
is one that you hit on earlier, which is trust.
We have clients who are
very concerned that the witness is going to receive
communications during the deposition
and essentially be coached
on answers because no one can see what they're doing.
One of the solutions we have is
they can use one of our
conference rooms if they'll come to it,
where we sanitize the whole area
and we put up essentially a second camera.
There's a webcam on the witness and then there's
a second camera that's watching the witness' computer
and watching where the witness is
so that you know the witness
isn't sitting there getting fed answers the whole time.
We've also done that sort of remotely where we go
and set up a hotel or conference room near that person,
use a sanitary process,
set up multiple cameras,
and then the witness comes in and testifies from there
while our court reporter's still remote.
So just basic things like that are two examples of
problems we've seen, and the key is
really train the lawyers ahead of time.
I think I'm over the 70 CLE mark at this point.
We do them almost daily.
I had an attorney who's practiced for
40 years finally broke down and said, yeah,
I've got cases that have to go forward, and
so we did a one-on-one CLE for two hours with
him just to familiarize himself with Zoom
and Webex. Got to train your clients.
Go ahead, Mark. Go ahead.
That training part is big.
In some depositions
we have attorneys that use TrialPad.
You can use TrialPad and
hook it up to Zoom
where you can pull up exhibits and mark them.
That's helped in some situations, like Mike talked about,
the document-intensive cases,
where they can actually set up a case in TrialPad
and use that as a way to
show the exhibits during a deposition.
But the training part of the attorneys
and even the deponents of what their role is
is important in this time.
I just put the slide up here, and this has been on
some previous sessions, as well.
From an agency owner's perspective,
how important is it to know this technology?
Are these must-haves? Are these differentiators
for where you're going?
Mark, maybe you can pick up on that.
Yeah. We use a couple different companies
as far as the technology side.
There's recording software companies like
SoniClear that are great recording tools,
that they've developed a deposition type
of tool where you can record
and do playbacks of questions and things like that.
We're trying to sell
our attorneys that we're technology experts,
so we have to prove that to them.
We can't show up with,
as Mike said, a camera and a tape recorder.
They need to see that we have a grasp on our technology.
I think technology's just getting better and better.
We've talked about working with Verbit in the future,
things that we want to do with you guys as far
as being able to do live transcripts
and things like that in end-user kind of aspects.
The more we can show
attorneys that we understand the technology,
and the technology actually helps their case,
their clients, and saves them money, it's big.
We have to be technology experts
or we wouldn't have any clients.
I agree with that completely.
In terms of platforms,
I would say 90 percent of
our depositions are taken by Zoom right now,
even though we tell all of our attorneys to
go with, Webex is what I prefer.
It's the only secure platform
that I'd found, or it's the most secure, I would say.
Zoom does not have end-to-end encryption,
it's had a lot of hacking problems.
I think it's subject to three class-action lawsuits,
and yet all the lawyers use it.
But be sure that
you're at least familiar with all the platforms
so that you can speak about them in an educated way
and give your client all the information they need
so they can choose what they think is best for them.
I will talk about just that real-time, you've
got that third point there,
and Neil had asked about the role of
real-time. I think it's huge.
We have several going on right now, real-time depositions.
We're using Remote Counsel to stream the text.
I know there are some other options
out there that you can use, as well.
Particularly in cases that call for it
that are highly technical in nature,
or terms are very specific and important,
like IP type of cases,
we see a whole lot of requests for real-time,
where it's getting streamed and it works fine.
Tony, your audio is cut out on my end.
Yeah. I'm on mute again. My apology, guys.
I was just trying to keep the background noise.
That leads into a few questions
now I'd like to answer, because we
have another session that's going to start shortly.
But I got a couple of good questions.
Mike, you touched upon it, and so did you, Mark,
and it's a very good question.
This is coming from an attendee.
You have a client that wants to
use Zoom and the video feature,
but no reporter, and the client says they'll
have the transcript typed up if needed later.
I guess the question is: How can
a reporter certify the record at that point?
So it's just the video, and it looks like
the client will have the transcript typed up later.
What are you certifying?
If you guys go to
the QA, I think you'll see that question.
Well, yeah. I would say in
the jurisdictions and where I practice,
that's not a practice that we would find acceptable.
I guess it depends. Arguably, if it's noticed
properly in Colorado and Kentucky,
then you can take a deposition by video only,
and then you can transcribe it later.
For example, if you're in Florida,
you can take a video only if all parties stipulate
and/or have a court reporter present.
So in those states it's fine.
I'm not sure where Sharon practices,
so maybe it's different in her particular jurisdiction.
I did also want to touch on, people are asking,
how are digital reporters
streaming real-time and things of that nature.
We employ stenographic reporters.
I don't dislike stenographers.
The problem is there's not enough of them to go around,
so we have great real-time stenographic reporters
who do our real-time reporting for us.
To follow up on that,
in Nevada, as where we primarily do our depositions,
we have to have a script
that we read when we go on the record,
and that script has to state who we are,
who we work for, where the deposition's being recorded,
the date, the time,
the deponent, swear the deponent in.
Because we do everything through all digital,
and our official record is the audio-video,
that recording is what we certify.
We don't certify the transcript.
In our script that we read
in the beginning after we swear the witness in,
we actually put on the record that this is
an audio-video-recorded deposition,
and a transcript will be created
as an aid to the official record.
Then when we provide the final product,
if the attorneys just want
the video based on our recording,
that is the official record,
then we will create
a certification that we recorded that deposition
and have all the admonitions in that certificate.
On our side, we don't certify a transcript.
But what we do is,
through Verbit and through our process,
we sync that transcript to the video.
One of the nice aspects of that that we found is that,
I have the utmost admiration for court reporters.
I could not type all day.
I just couldn't do it. But everybody
makes mistakes. We're all humans.
We might hear a word a little
differently than what's said on the record,
or a stenographer might type
a word or a sentence that's just a
little differently than what it's said.
By having the audio-videos as the official record,
we can always make adjustments to
the transcript if we make a mistake,
which we try not to, obviously.
But that's our process as far as certification.
One more question here.
Actually, this is something you've
both touched upon in previous discussions.
The individual stating that they had
a poor experience with
a deponent who was not familiar with Zoom.
Given that, how do you and
how much lee-time should you get for
preparation in advance for witnesses,
and how do you work with the attorneys on that?
There are some people who've never used Zoom,
that may have very limited bandwidth access.
How do you account for that in your preparation and
training for the attorneys with the witness?
A lot of it comes down to equipment problems.
It's people who just don't have
adequate bandwidth, as you pointed out.
We will ship a laptop, a webcam,
and a hotspot to every single witness who requests one,
and then, of course, we're not even charging our clients
for it right now to try to keep everybody working.
But that way, it ensures that we have a good video feed,
reliable Internet, and a piece of equipment that works.
Of course, we sanitize that before and after its use.
Otherwise, it's just educating them.
A lot of the times the attorneys have a good sense
for how much they or their witness knows
or doesn't know, and they'll ask for more help or less.
In the CLEs we do, we tell everyone
to include in their notice
an instruction for all participants
to test the Zoom links that we provide
at least two days before it's scheduled, preferably more.
So that you don't show up the day
of and have some technical problem,
and have to reschedule and waste
everybody's time and money.
Then we just have the training in place,
just take as much time as necessary to
make sure everybody's comfortable with it.
Be pretty similar to what Mike's talking about.
What we do is,
we provide a checklist to
our clients that is for themselves and their deponents.
If it's their client that's being deposed
or somebody else doing the check-in with the Zoom.
If they're new to Zoom and they've never used it,
we'll set up a test call with them to make
sure that they understand
the dynamics of how to use Zoom,
what their role is,
that the connection works okay.
So we'll take the time prior to
the deposition to connect to a deponent
and test out and make sure everything works okay.
Just recently, we had a deposition
where it was a personal injury case
where a young man had gotten in a car accident.
He went outside of his work
and did the deposition on his phone.
Well, he was too far away from the building,
so he lost WiFi,
and now he was just on cellular data.
We had to stop the deposition
because the connection was so poor
and get him to a location that was useful.
A lot of it is educating both sides.
We've created a checklist for our attorneys,
and we've created a checklist for our deponents
to be prepared before the deposition starts.
Great. I just want to thank you both very much
for your contribution today and your insight.
It was very excited to have this session.
To the remainder of the participants,
session four will be starting very shortly.
That's a market overview provided by Strategy&.
If you have any further questions from this session,
please get them over to us
and we'll get them answered for you.
Once again, Mark and Michael,
thank you so much for your time, much appreciated.
Thank you. Bye-bye, everybody.