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CA CCP 2025.510(a) - Court Reporters

CA CCP 2025.510(a) Court Reporters Transcribe Depositions

Last month I was a court reporter for an all-day deposition. At the end of the day, as I was packing up, I overheard an attorney mention the case might settle.  In an effort to do the right thing, I offered to hold my notes and not transcribe the deposition for a few days to save everyone money.  BIG MISTAKE.  I had this conversation with only one party being present.  The attorney was grateful for the offer and agreed to let me know if they would need the transcript.

Our firm’s turnaround time of transcripts is seven business days. On the eighth day, the attorney that was not present for the “hold notes” after the deposition called wanting to know what was going on, “Is there gamesmanship happening?  We count on your firm getting the transcript out at least by the tenth day.  Why isn’t the transcript out yet?”

CA CCP 2025.510(a) states: “Unless the parties agree otherwise, the testimony at any deposition recorded by stenographic means shall be transcribed.”

I apologized to the attorney, admitted I had made a mistake in offering to save the parties money, and promised to get the transcript out immediately.

While my intent was to do the right thing, save litigation costs, I was wrong and should have thought of the consequences of not having all parties present for the conversation.

It is also interesting to note, CA CCP 2025.510(b) states: “The party noticing the deposition shall bear the cost of the transcription, unless the court, on motion and for good cause shown, orders that the cost be borne or shared by another party.”

In the above scenario, if the attorney whom had asked me not to transcribe my notes asked me to never transcribe my notes, and the other side wanted the transcript, the noticing attorney who didn’t want the transcript would be responsible for payment unless the court orders otherwise.

Being a great court reporter means to always be conscious and transparent in every agreement and conversation.

@rosaliekramm (Twitter)

Kramm Court Reporting (Facebook)

CA Rules of Court 8.130

California Rules of Court – 2017 Reporter’s transcript

Reading through the 2017 California Rules of Court regarding court reporter’s transcripts, there are some provisions that are particularly interesting relating to timeliness, the cost of transcripts, and the appellant’s ability to deposit a certified transcript.

APPEAL TRANSCRIPT COST:

8.130(b)(1)(A) The amount specified in the reporter’s written estimate; or (B) An amount calculated as follows:

(i) For proceedings that have NOT been previously been transcribed: $325 per fraction of the day’s proceedings that did not exceed three hours; or $650 per day or fraction that exceeded three hours.

(ii) For proceedings that have previously been transcribed: $80 per fraction of the day’s proceedings that did not exceed three hours, or $160 per day or fraction that exceeded three hours.

(3) Instead of a deposit under (1), the party may substitute:

(A) The reporter’s written waiver of a deposit.  A reporter may waive the deposit for a part of the designated proceedings, but such a waiver replaces the deposit for only that part.

(B) A copy of the Transcript Reimbursement Fund application filed under (c)(1)

(C) A certified transcript of all the proceedings designated by the party.  The transcript must comply with the format requirements of rule 8.144.

 

APPEAL TRANSCRIPT TIMELINESS:

Rule 8.130(d): Superior court clerk’s duties

  1. The clerk must file a party’s notice of designation even if the party does not present the required deposit under (b)(1) or a substitute under (b)(3) with its notice of designation.
  2. The clerk must promptly send the reporter notice of the designation and of the deposit or substitute and notice to prepare the transcript, showing the date the notice was sent to the reporter, when the court receives:
  1. The required deposit under (b)(1);
  2. A reporter’s written waiver of a deposit under (b)(3); or
  3. A copy of the Court Reporters Board’s provisional approval of the party’s application for payment under the Transcript Reimbursement Fund under (c).

Rule 8.130(f): Filing the transcript; copies; payment

  1. Within 30 days after notice is sent under (d)(2), the reporter must prepare and certify an original of the transcript and file it in superior court. The reporter must also file one copy of the original transcript, or more than one copy if multiple appellants equally share the cost of preparing the record (see rule 8.147(a)(2)). Only the reviewing court can extend the time to prepare the reporter’s transcript (see rule 8.60).
  2. When the transcript is completed, the reporter must notify all parties to the appeal that the transcript is complete, bill each designating party at the statutory rate, and send a copy of the bill to the superior court clerk. The clerk must pay the reporter from that party’s deposited funds and refund any excess deposit or notify the party of any additional funds needed. In a multiple reporter case, the clerk must pay each reporter who certifies under penalty of perjury that his or her transcript portion is completed.
  3. If the appeal is abandoned or is dismissed before the reporter has filed the transcript, the reporter must inform the superior court clerk of the cost of the portion of the transcript that the reporter has completed. The clerk must pay that amount to the reporter from the appellant’s deposited funds and refund any excess deposit.
  4. On request, and unless the superior court orders otherwise, the reporter must provide the Court of Appeal or any party with a copy of the reporter’s transcript in computer-readable format. Each computer-readable copy must comply with the requirements of rule 8.144(a)(4).

Filing court transcripts for the Court of Appeal is complicated. My staff have found that many attorneys are not sure when the court reporter is to begin finalizing the appeal transcript.  Receiving formal notice of designations under (d)(2) from the superior court clerk triggers the start time in which the court reporter can produce the appeal transcript.  Our company has had frequent requests from attorneys asking us to begin an appeal transcript before the provisions in (d)(2) occurs.  The transcript is finalized, but the court reporter’s hands are tied without receiving the new appeal case number and how many designations/volumes are formally ordered.

Court reporters that provide court reporting services in the California superior courts (hearings and/or trials) study Rule 8.130 – California Rules of Court.

@rosaliekramm (Twitter)

Kramm Court Reporting (Facebook)

San Diego Superior Court – “Court Approved” Court Reporters – Choosing the Right Court Reporter

As I have written about in past posts, the San Diego Superior Court has laid off all civil litigation court reporters.  Attorneys need to make arrangements to bring in their own court reporter for hearings and trials.

I am proud that five of the “Court Approved” court reporters are working under the Kramm umbrella, and I have been personally going to court to report hearings to get a firsthand look at the procedures put in place to ensure efficiency in having non-employee court reporters cover the Court’s calendar.

I have put together some suggested best practices to help law firms know how to make a good decision when hiring a court reporter for court and what to expect:

  1.  Hearings:  There is paperwork that the court reporter needs to provide the clerk when reporting a hearing, whether the court reporter is “Court Approved” or not.  The paperwork includes the court reporter’s CSR number, what type of Computer-Aided Transcription software they are on, et cetera.  The court reporters are responsible for bringing the paperwork to present to the clerk.
  2. Hearings:  If you have a non-Court-Approved court reporter reporting your hearing, the court reporter will bring the paperwork and ask all parties to sign a stipulation that allows the court reporter to transcribe the hearing.
  3. Hearings:  Many times there is more than one court reporter assigned to a courtroom during a Court’s law-and-motion calendar.  Your court reporter should identify herself/himself to you before the first matter and will only report your hearing (unless she/he is hired to report for another party as well).
  4. Archive:  All court reporters, “Court Approved” or not, are required to upload their stenographic notes to an offsite server that has been set up by the San Diego Superior Court.  Each court reporter is to receive their username/password so they can log on and upload their notes.
  5. At the end of the hearing, let the court reporter know whether you want a transcript or not.  Please note that the cost per page of the transcript is set out by Government Code Section 69950.
  6. Trials:  The majority of the judges must have a realtime court reporter.  Be aware that there are different levels of ability of realtime court reporters.  If your trial is complex business, patent, or contains particularly sophisticated subject matter, you will need to select your realtime court reporter carefully to ensure the judge is able to read the realtime feed.  Also, if you are planning to order rough drafts at the end of the day, you will want the drafts to be readable and usable.
  7. Trials:  Ensure that your trial court reporter knows how to produce an appeal transcript if necessary.

Choosing your court reporter in court is important.  There are many incredibly talented Certified Shorthand Reporters, both “Court Approved” and not “Court Approved,” that would do a fantastic job at your trial.

 

@rosaliekramm

Facebook:  Kramm Court Reporting