I am just wondering from the reporters out there how many have their scopists do a Rough and send it to the attorneys? And if so, do you pay your scopist any extra for doing the Rough and then providing a Final as well?
I have worked for the same last for 5 1/2 years, doing many roughs over this time, never paid any extra for any of them. I am doing one today, 230 pages, a clean line-by-line rough (almost done after 5 hours) and have to email it directly to the attorneys. This is becoming a full day on just a rough. Then I get to pop in the audio tapes from videographer and provide a final in a few days. She has never offered to pay extra for a rough, and her being my first "real" full-time reporter I have worked for, I never knew what to charge, if any, so I never have. But now I am losing a full day of income and I think it is time to raise my rates in general. I have never raised my rates, but since I began I have received my AA and AS, and even became a CRI through NCRA.
For reporters who do pay for Roughs, what percentage "extra" would be considered fair for both reporter and scopist? Also, what about cover pages? I do cover pages for her quite often, but at the same scoping rate, which seems low considering time spent on covers versus scoping.
(NOTE: I am not trying to "screw" her on rates, just trying to be fair to both of us.)
Have a scopist "do" the rough draft? And send it to the atty? I've really never heard of such a thing. I thought the purpose of a rough draft was to provide an immediate near-perfect or close-to-perfect first-pass draft immediately at the end of the day. That's my view of it, anyway. And that's why rough draft work is a specialty ... or at least now I'm thinking that a certain segment of the market is. I would like to think that any court reporter in the country could have their scopist prepare a rough draft overnight. I guess being able to provide an immediate, pristine rough draft is a specialty within a specialty, then. Pardon my obvious puzzlement, but I'm really floored to know reporters have their scopists prepare their rough drafts.
Even though I have never used a scopist, any work you do for a reporter you should be paid for whether it is proofreading, scoping, overnight rough and then a final. You charge for both rough at one rate and then also your normal final rate.
So true, Rosalie. The reporter gets to charge extra for that rough, so should the scopist. Really the only issue is: How much work is the scopist putting into the rough to make it where the reporter is willing to send to the client?
she wanted a "clean" line-by-line check on the rough. I spent almost 6 hours basically doing a proof (quick read and fix almost everything I can spot). I am now starting from the beginning with the audio tapes from the videographer and fixing up everything else. I guess at least the good thing is that I did such a good job on the rough that it is not taking too long with the tapes. And I sent the rough directly to the client myself, cc'ing her on the e-mail.
Kelli, you're kind of touching on this, so let me run with it. Put yourself in a scheduler's place. The client calls in, schedules an expert's dep, and says oh, by the way, we don't need realtime, but it's imperative that we get an instant rough draft -- like you said, before they get back to their desk. What's a scheduler to do? I'm not saying that next-day delivery of a rough draft is not acceptable, because obviously lots of reporters do that. But I am saying that the ability to immediately deliver a totally readable rough draft is a specialty, and those reporters who can do that should realize that and own it.
Tere are court reporters, and then there are court reporters. There's a demand out there for rough draft reporters, and abilities and expectations vary. Of course, there's realtime in theory, and there's real realtime the client can read. The point I'd like to make is that an atty's stock in trade are his time and advice. Time, time, time. In this age of instantaniety (made that up), everyone, especially what I call "the youngsters," want everything yesterday, it seems. Yes, there's a lid for every pot, and all skill level of reporter can stay busy. But if a reporter has the ability to write it right the first time, to deliver an instantaneous readable realtime output, or an immediate readable and usable rough draft within minutes, not overnight, that is a very high-end, very-much-in-demand niche specialty within the reporting profession which ... do I really have to say it? ... which should be highly respected in every way.
Small point, but FWIW, if I cover 300 jobs in a year, 280 of them are overnight delivery, including extended assignments of days or weeks in length. I'd never dream of delivering that valuable service, where time is of the essence, for free.