The Role of the Court Reporter
Court reporters provide the indispensable service of a real-time record of depositions, hearings, and trials. Using various technologies, they compile a written, verbatim record of every word that is uttered during a legal proceeding.
Court reporters are especially crucial for depositions, in order to capture the details of testimony as a case unfolds. This is particularly significant in cases where a witness’s testimony is a central component of an attorney’s argument.
Having a detailed, word-for-word record allows the lawyer to perform a thorough cross-examination. If the transcript is absent, incomplete, or inaccurate, the witness can either forget their previous account or manipulate it, leaving the lawyer in an unfavorable position to prove their point.
Transcripts are an invaluable tool for lawyers to uncover the truth of events that took place and obtain a just result. A court reporter is much more effective in this regard than an unclear audio recording, as having access to a written record allows attorneys to target specific words or phrases that are pertinent to their case and then revisit them in greater detail at a later date.
The Benefits of AI Transcription
There was a time when almost all courts across the country provided a professional court reporter to maintain a faithful and detailed record of all proceedings. However, a shortage of reporters has left many legal professionals on their own when it comes to obtaining accurate transcripts of courtroom events.
AI transcription has the potential to rescue court systems from their chronic backlogs by filling in the gaps. When applied to automated speech recognition (ASR) technology, AI improves speech-to-text engines to the point that they can transcribe jargon-heavy legal proceedings highly accurately.
The best results come from solutions that leverage the power of human intelligence as well, as the automatically produced transcripts are then reviewed and edited by professional transcribers to ensure the highest level of accuracy. Moreover, any corrections or enhancements are then fed back to the ASR via adaptive algorithms, allowing the technology to constantly improve.
An AI solution delivers significant operational benefits for court reporting companies. Automating the transcription process dramatically reduces turnaround time to receive completed texts in days or even hours, a feat that was previously completely unheard of.
A solution that combines artificial and human intelligence also substantially decreases operating costs by shortening critical processes, allowing organizations to save time and money, and scale their businesses by pursuing new opportunities. Lastly, advanced technology also enables customized template options, to eliminate the need for time-consuming manual formatting.
The profession of court reporting has always been intrinsically connected with technology and has consequently evolved as the legal technology has changed. But, while the benefits are exciting, it’s important to note that skilled professionals are indispensable as monitors of technology. There is simply no replacement for human judgment.
Just as court reporters once traded in quills and inkwells for stenotype machines, AI-enabled transcription and voice recognition software represents the next frontier in reporting tools. These technologies are designed with simplicity and ease-of-use in mind to ensure a smooth transition and quick adoption.
By simplifying processes and optimizing workflows, AI-based legal transcription software represents a vital tool for court reporters. Going forward, those who become well-versed in the latest technologies are poised to become invaluable resources for all levels of courts as well as for the legal system at large.