Are you looking for a career that?s challenging, rewarding, and interesting? Court reporting could the right place for you. And don?t worry that you?ll be in courtrooms all day. There are opportunities outside the legal field that make this an attractive profession. And it?s a great time to consider a move to court reporting!
The Arizona court reporter shortage is making it challenging for attorneys and businesses to find people with our training and skills to help with depositions, court proceedings, closed captioning, and more. If there?s a shortage now, then it?s only going to get worse unless we work together.
By the Numbers
By 2018 there will be a need for more than 5,000 court reporters and that number will continue to increase until we figure out what we can do an industry to help [Source: Ducker Worldwide].
In Arizona alone there is already a need for court reporters outside Maricopa County including Pima, Coconino, Yavapai, and Mohave counties. In Greenlee and Apache counties, there hasn?t been a court reporter on staff in years forcing court administrators to use electronic recordings of proceedings in lieu of reporters. [Source: KJZZ]
According to the Arizona Supreme Court, human court reporters are only required in cases involving a Grand or felony jury trial, death penalty murder cases, some sex crimes, and parental consent for abortion. That leaves a lot of cases without a human court reporter.
What You Can Do to Help
Often the biggest challenge is that in counties experiencing a court reporter shortage, no one from a larger area like Phoenix or Tucson wants to move there. They can stay in a more populated area and work as a freelance reporter where they likely make more money than in a rural county job.
In Cochise County, they?ve experimented with bringing in freelance reporters for certain cases with mixed results. Freelancers work their own schedule, not when the county needs them so they can say no to work in favor of being able to work closer to home. Even if this approach works, it?s not a long-term solution.
Looking to the Future
The reality is that if we don?t fill court reporter schools, we will, in the not so distant future, run out of court reporters in rural and urban areas. What can we do today?
- Work with high school and college counselors to bring a face to our profession.
- Use social media, blogs, and press releases to share industry news.
- Share the benefits of being a court reporter with job seekers.
There?s not one solution to the Arizona court reporter shortage but working together we can bring attention to our industry.
If you?re interested in learning more or are in need of a Phoenix court reporter, contact us today!