I'm a depo reporter in L.A.  I just finished a realtime depo where opposing counsel, One Christopher G. Lyster from Lacy Lyster Malone & Steppick in Fort Worth, Texas, stated that his reporting agency always gave him realtime for free.  He had never been billed for it.  I replied that I found that hard to believe, but he stuck by it.  Anybody work for the agency that does reporting for this form?  Are you really giving it away for free??!!

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Wow.  Maybe they're really poor reporters and can't charge for it.  You never know.  I would never do that.

Oops.  I was so incensed about this that I didn't even take the time to proofread my own post.  I capped "one," and wrote "form" instead of "firm"!

I read it so fast, I didn't even notice.

Don't we have any members from Texas?  I would love to know if this atty was BS'g me or if they really give free RT in that state.

Lindsay, this website is mainly for reporters to join their Cover Depo groups and to get email blasts of job offers.  Not that many reporters hang out here to socialize.  They want work.

Hello, I am a proofreader in the DFW area in Texas. I assure you that realtime is not free in Texas - I have done realtime proofing here for a Texas realtime reporter.

Yes, there is an agency in Fort Worth that provides free realtime, at least as I understand it.  I heard about it many years ago.  I cannot remember the name of the agency now (and have vague recollection of hearing they sold to another, larger agency).  That being said, I have never personally witnessed this, so I have no firsthand knowledge.

The two Texas firms I've worked for on jobs in California charge for realtime.  Our response should be it's a valuable added service and I expect to be paid for it.  You are lucky that your firm doesn't charge for it, but I do.  

We don't have to justify it.  Our charges are our charges.  

I would not do it if I'm not getting paid for it.  


I wouldn't do it for free if an agency said they do not charge.  There are reporters in the Fort Worth area that apparently do, though, although one has never confessed it publicly, that I know of (I imagine that's something they'd prefer to keep on the down-low).  Then again, perhaps the agency gives it away and pays the reporters.

yeah, I know a reporter who offers it free to one of her clients.  If you offer it to one side you have to offer it to the other for free too.  Then eventually everyone's expecting to get it free.  We're a business, not a charity.  

I agree realtime should not be given away; but if an agency chooses to make this a marketing draw, they need to pay the reporter notwithstanding.  As I'm sure you know, there's lots that goes on in production and billing the reporter is not privy to.  A reporter voicing opinion about rates and policies of an agency, to counsel or legal staff, no matter what the rate or policy (including turnaround time), should be avoided by reporter--they may think they know but not.

When it comes to that attorney or legal staff trying to get the same deal with another agency, however, "Nice try, bucko" -- well, it would be good practice for the reporter to refer them to the agency for such questions (ANY questions regarding rates and turnaround).  As long as the reporter is paid for services rendered, it should be no matter.

yeah, I tell them they need to talk to the firm about rates.  I do know what my small local firms charge for most things, but no idea what large firms charge.  I heard at a convention that a big box firm is charging the O&1 client less and cost shifting to the copy firm.  $1400 for a copy transcript!  I'd never comment on what the firm I'm working for charges even if I think I know.  I usually say "some firms" do such and such. 


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