It has been an interesting week re court rates for hearings, trials, etc. that have been offered.   I just responded to a job offer that pays a half day per diem for a proceeding going from 11 a.m. for "about four hours."  I am accustomed to charging half day for anything in the morning OR half day for the afternoon.  If an assignment takes up the morning and bulk of the afternoon in court, wouldn't that constitute a full day?  It sure would for me.

Another large nationwide CR firm tells you they pay half day/full day per diems at 300/600.  BUT what they do is charge that as a minimum, so it is including pages transcribed.  When I asked them to clarify their rates, they asserted it is actually $250 for an all day court per diem, plus pages.  So $50 worth of transcript pages are free for half day, and $350 worth of transcript is free for full day?  I'm not liking these recent rates offered for court work.  That makes no sense and certainly does not offer incentive to work for those rates.

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Well, tell them what you charge.  Does your plumber tell you what you are going to pay?  No.  He tells you what he charges.  You are doing the work.

Yes, I am available for my rates only. My point is that there is a very deep decline recently in what the big contracting firms are offering as rates for court work and it is a complicated schedule of payment regarding what is paid if transcribed and what isn't transcribed. Bottom line is it is LESS than what you are paid as a pro tem working for the Court as a pro tem.

The big contracting firms only pay those rates because they are finding reporters who are willing to work for those rates!

You got it.  That goes across the board.

that's no good.  pro tem rates are too low already!

I would never, ever accept those rates.  That is ridiculous.  What county is it in?

I am in the Bay Area in northern CA. There is such a huge spread on rates. I have the luxury at this point in my career to be picky, but not all reporters have that option.

If you educate all the ones that don't have that option, maybe something will change!!

Yep, but lots of reporters don't want to hear it.  Apparently, they'd rather take less than take control (speaking nationwide).

I think the reporters are not thinking like small 

business people, they are thinking like employees.

I agree.


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