The widespread availability of fast internet connections combined with a rising need for legal services has opened a wide range of flexible, home-based employment opportunities. Two of the most lucrative are legal transcription services and legal videographer positions.
Legal Transcription Services
Attorneys interview witnesses before they appear in court, a process called a deposition. They need these interviews recorded by a qualified and certified individual. Court reporters provide legal transcription services for depositions, documenting the deposition in a manner designed to hold up in a court of law.
Legal transcription services can be offered out of the transcriptionist’s home. Some attorneys require the transcriptionist to take the deposition in person, generally in the attorney’s office. With the increase in web video technology, some depositions can be taken remotely so the transcriptionist can work from a home office.
Other legal transcription services include making a transcription of video depositions or working as a scopist, a person who helps a court reporter create a final transcript.
Video depositions or other video evidence for a court of law must be recorded under careful conditions so the opposing attorney cannot challenge it. Legal videography used to require expensive equipment well out of reach of the average home business, but inexpensive video technology is available today, which has put it in the reach of nearly everyone who wishes to be a legal videographer.
Unlike transcription services, legal videographers can’t work remotely. They must travel to the site of the deposition, typically the attorney’s office or a video conferencing facility. However the profession carries a lot of flexibility, making it ideal for people with personal commitments that make a typical office job impossible or simply undesirable. Legal videographers are in increasing demand as more attorneys use the technology.
Working Through a Court Reporting Agency
Although both these careers can conceivably be done as one-person businesses, most reporters prefer working through a court reporting agency. They retain the flexibility of home-based employment but have the advantage of professional support, marketing and billing services.
A court reporting agency offers a wider range of clients than a court reporter could find alone. Many large clients prefer dealing with agencies than single-person operations so certain jobs would be unavailable when working alone. Agencies are especially helpful to a legal videographer, offering equipment and video conferencing facilities for their use.
There is a growing revolution in employment allowing more people to work from the convenience of their home offices. It is easier to arrange their work schedules around other commitments and home workers save money and time by not having to commute to an office every day. Telecommuters are no longer oddities but instead are becoming a routine part of the legal profession.