CURRENT STATUS OF TEXAS CERTIFIED SHORTHAND REPORTERS



Much has been written about the current “shortage” of court reporters.  Much of what has been written, though, is exaggerated by those seeking to circumvent the rules of the discovery process by introducing unauthorized methods to report legal proceedings.  Some of those methods are now being challenged in courts in various states due to privacy violations.  

 

Those unauthorized methods are different forms of digital recordings.  Once the recording leaves the hands of the person pushing the button, it gets uploaded to the Cloud or some other remote server and are then edited by someone that the consumer knows nothing about.  There have been instances of some recordings being published on vendor websites to promote their product.  Litigants in Texas do not need to be today’s internet news. Texas Certified Shorthand Reporters undergo a criminal background check, extensive training, and must pass an exam on our skill.  We also must pass a written knowledge exam.  We are familiar with the rules for taking a deposition and the appellate process, are sworn officers of the courts, and adhere to a strict Code of Ethics.  That Code of Ethics includes a confidentiality clause.  The common goal for every Texas Certified Shorthand Reporter is to maintain the integrity of the record.

Here’s where we stand today:

  • There are over 2,219 Texas Certified Shorthand Reporters as of February 2022.
  • While other states have had court reporting schools close, Texas currently has ten.  Four of those have been established within the last four years.  
  • TCRA members were instrumental in opening those last four schools.
  • Many of the instructors at the schools are Texas Certified Shorthand Reporters.
  • There are currently over 900 students enrolled court reporting schools.
  • In the year 2021, Texas certified 85 new reporters.
  • TCRA is committed to recruitment of students to schools by attending career fairs.
  • There are seven provisional and eight apprentice licensed reporters.  
  • MyTexasCSR.com is a resource for the Texas Bar to find a court reporter to cover their work.  This is a free service hosted by TCRA.  Registration is a simple process.
  • There are 18 states that the Judicial Branch Certification Commission recognizes as having substantially equivalent skills exams as Texas.  This streamlines the process for certification in Texas for reporters in those states.
TCRA remains committed to working with the judicial system, the State Bar of Texas, and the private sector to make court reporting services available as needed by the people of Texas.  

 

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