SUPERIOR COURT OF CALIFORNIA, COUNTY OF SAN DIEGO OFFICIAL REPORTER PRO TEMPORE POLICY

I. Purpose

Parties have the right to arrange, at their own expense, for the presence of court reporters if

the services of an official court reporter are not available for a proceeding (Gov. Code § 68086

& Cal. Rules of Court [CRC], rule 2.956). This document establishes policy for party(ies)

arranging for a court reporter when an official reporter is not normally available and

establishes requirements for qualifying as an official reporter pro tempore.

II. Policy

A. If the services of an official court reporter are not available for a proceeding, a party may

privately arrange for court reporter services at their expense, pursuant to Gov. Code §

68086 and CRC 2.956. This includes cases where a proceeding continues to or past the

date for which a reporter is no longer normally available.

B. Parties must make arrangements for reporters in advance of the proceeding to ensure the

proceedings will be reported. Advance notice to the court of an intention to do so is not

required.

C. Parties may arrange for their own reporter, or may select from the Court-Approved List of

Official Reporters Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-321) (List).

1. Court-Approved List

a. As a service to court users, the court will establish and maintain a list of court-approved

official reporters pro tempore who have met the requirements and

qualifications established by the court. (See Policy for Court-Approved List of

Official Reporters Pro Tempore SDSC Form #ADM-313.)

b. Parties are not obligated to select a reporter from this List. It is provided as a

courtesy.

2. Appointment as an Official Reporter Pro Tempore for a Proceeding:

a. Reporters must complete and sign sections 1, 2, and 3 of the Appointment as

Official Reporter Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-316).

b. All parties present at the proceeding must complete and sign the stipulation portion

of the Appointment as an Official Reporter Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-316)

stipulating to the court appointing an official reporter pro tempore. If the reporter is

on the List, the stipulation is not required. Parties appearing through Court Call or

otherwise by telephone may stipulate orally, which stipulation should be noted in a

minute order.

c. The Appointment as an Official Reporter Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-316)

must be completed by all parties and provided to the court before the proceeding

commences.

d. The Judicial Officer in the courtroom must order the reporter appointed as an

official reporter pro tem, using the Appointment of Official Reporter Pro Tempore

(SDSC Form #ADM-316), before she or he may report the proceeding.

D. This policy will be posted on the court’s website at www.sdcourt.ca.gov.

OFFICIAL REPORTER PRO TEMPORE POLICY, continued

SDSC ADM-315 (New 9/12) OFFICIAL REPORTER PRO TEMPORE POLICY Page 2 of 3

E. Official Reporter Pro Tempore Requirements

By signing the Appointment as Official Reporter Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-316),

the reporter agrees to the following:

1. Is not a regular employee of the court. Note: “Per Diem” reporters, who have an

Independent Contractor Agreement with the court, are not considered regular

employees.

2. Has a valid, current California Certified Shorthand Reporter License and will maintain

current contact information with the court.

3. All fees for reporting services, including appearance and real-time fees, are the

responsibility of the party or parties who arranged the reporter services and may not be

charged to the court.

4. To comply with statutes and rules applicable to official reporters pro tempore, including

the duty to timely prepare transcripts, including those for appeals, in the proper form.

5. To follow directions from the court, and to be subject to the jurisdiction of the court to

the same extent as an official reporter.

6. To be available for immediate (within 30 minutes) read-back of notes.

7. To be in good standing with the Court Reporters Board of California.

8. To comply with the court’s requirements regarding uploading electronic notes as stated

in Official Reporter Pro Tempore Electronic Notes Upload/Archiving Policy (SDSC

Form # ADM-319), including uploading each day’s stenotype notes to the court’s

vendor (ACORN) by 1:30 p.m. the next business day, or in the case of illness or

emergency, as soon as practicable thereafter.

F. Additional Information for Parties

1. Only One Official Record

There can only be one official record of court proceedings, and only a reporter

appointed by the court may report a court proceeding (CCP § 273; Gov. Code §§

70043, 70044; Redwing v. Moncravie, (1934) 138 Cal. App. 432, 434). Only one

reporter will be allowed to report a court proceeding at any given time. If the parties

cannot agree on a reporter, the judicial officer will make the selection.

2. Payment for Official Reporter Pro Tempore Services

CRC 2.956(c) provides that the party arranging for an official reporter pro tempore is

responsible for paying the reporter’s fees. These expenses may be recoverable as

part of a party’s costs as provided by law (Gov. Code § 68086(a)(4)).

3. Indigent Litigants

In cases where the court no longer provides court reporters, indigent litigants are not

entitled to have the court provide or pay for a court reporter based on a fee waiver.

Fee waivers apply only to fees charged by the court. They do not apply to court

reporter fees and costs in cases where the court is not providing the court reporter.

Privately retained court reporters are independent from the court, and are allowed to

charge indigent litigants for their services.

4. Transcripts

a. Copies of transcripts may be ordered to be lodged with the court. Any party who

orders proceedings transcribed by the official reporter pro tempore may be ordered

to lodge a copy of the transcript with the court (CCP § 128(a)).

b. Transcripts produced by an official reporter pro tempore will be treated, for court

purposes, identically to transcripts prepared by official reporters. Reporting notes

of an official reporter pro tempore are official records of the court (Gov. Code

§69955(a)). The notes of official reporters pro tempore, when transcribed and

certified, are prima facie evidence of the testimony and proceedings (CCP §

273(a)).

OFFICIAL REPORTER PRO TEMPORE POLICY, continued

SDSC ADM-315 (New 9/12) OFFICIAL REPORTER PRO TEMPORE POLICY Page 3 of 3

c. Original and certified transcripts are admissible as evidence to the extent otherwise

permitted by law. Transcripts prepared by a privately retained certified shorthand

reporter appointed by the court as an official reporter pro tempore are admissible

as evidence to the extent otherwise permitted by law (CCP § 273(a)).

d. Unofficial transcripts prepared by other than official court reporters or official court

reporters pro tempore are not admissible (CCP § 273(b); Redwing v. Moncravie

(1934) 138 Cal. App. 432, 435; Reid v. Reid (1887) 73 Cal. 206; Estate of Benton

(1901) 131 Cal. 472 at 472-480.)

5. Reimbursement of Advanced Fees

Fees lodged prior to the date this policy becomes effective for an official reporter in

advance of the proceeding where a reporter will no longer be available will be returned

to the party that lodged them, upon request to the court.

G. Forms and Additional Information

1. Court-Approved List of Official Reporters Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-321)

2. Policy for Court-Approved List of Official Reporters Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-

313)

3. Appointment of Official Reporter Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-316)

4. Official Reporter Pro Tempore Electronic Notes Upload/Archiving Procedure (SDSC

Form #ADM-319)

5. Guide for Official Reporters Pro Tempore (SDSC Form #ADM-318)

These forms, and additional information, are available on the court’s website:

www.sdcourt.ca.gov 

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