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Court Reporting FAQ

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Frequently Asked Questions About Court Reporting 

How many words can court reporters write per minute?

To achieve certification as a certified shorthand reporter (depending on the state the reporter is certified in) a student must write and pass one literary test at 180 words a minute, one jury charge at 200 words a minute, and one Q&A test at 225 words a minute, with an overall accuracy rate of 97.5%.

Will court reporters be replaced by recording devices?

In short, no! Recording devices have existed since the late 1800s, but certified shorthand reporters have been and continue to be the gold standard in the courtroom and deposition suite. Certified shorthand reporters accurately distinguish each person attending the proceeding; and if two or more people speak at once, the certified shorthand reporter will speak up and ask them to not speak over each other, enabling him/her to create an accurate record of the proceeding.

Digital recorders are NOT certified by the court reporting boards in any state. They are not required to be background checked or fingerprinted, as certified shorthand reporters are. This is of utmost importance when handling your clients’ sensitive, confidential, private information. When their recording equipment malfunctions, the integrity of the record is jeopardized.

Court reporting makes a world of difference in the outcome of one’s case. Garner a better understanding of the service by reading through these FAQs.

What is that funny-looking machine I see Certified Shorthand Reporters using on t.v. shows?

That is called a court reporting machine. Certified Shorthand Reporters use it to record what is said exactly as it is being said during a deposition or in court. CSRs write in a shorthand language on their writer and transcribe the written letters into a certified transcript after the proceeding is concluded for the day. Learning a shorter way to write on their machine allows them to be able to achieve speeds on their machine from 225 words per minute all the way to 360 words per minute with a 97.23% accuracy. This world record was set by Mark Kislingbury in July of 2004.

Are court reporters certified?

Not all states require court reporters to be certified.  Here is a link to the requirements in each state to be able to work as a court reporter in their state:



Hanna & Hanna Reporting is a full-service court reporting firm offering complete legal support services, videoconferencing and deposition suites. We provide a wide variety of services related to the court reporter profession, including realtime, transcription service, closed captioning, litigation support and legal video services.


We offer the professional technical support and legal support that makes your job that much easier.  We are a member of NCRA, STAR, NNRC, TCRA, TEXDRA and HCRA. Hanna & Hanna Reporting is privileged to have an exceptionally dedicated and committed staff of professionals for all your court reporting needs.


Hanna & Hanna Reporting  is headquartered in Houston, Texas and offers worldwide scheduling of depositions, court reporters and videoconferencing. Our Texas locations can provide local services across the region.

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