Legal Transcription Jobs

Legal proceedings are elaborate and run across days and sometimes years. It is often said that a lawyer remains a student throughout life because of the extensive research work required on a daily basis. Both civil and criminal lawyers need hard copies of proceedings at the courtroom and law offices. This includes testimonies, pleadings, interrogatories, and judgments.

Legal proceedings are generally recorded onto audio or video tape, and legal transcriptionists prepare hard copies on computer. Government agencies, law firms, attorneys, non-governmental organizations, financial/banking firms, and insurance companies require legal transcription services. While law firms and attorneys generally employ in-house legal transcriptionists and assistants, the remaining outsource transcription to law firms or specialized transcription firms located within the country or abroad.

The work of a legal transcriptionist primarily involves transcribing legal proceedings onto the computer. Drafting and filing legal documents, assisting attorneys with research work, preparing summaries, and keeping track of new laws are other responsibilities. They also write routine letters or engage in general correspondence for their clients.

To become a legal transcriptionist a degree in law, international relations, or political science is usually necessary. This is because individuals with other qualifications find it difficult to understand legal jargon. Law firm assistants or trainees can even work from home as legal transcriptionists. Fresh law graduates can join firms offering legal transcription services. Some these firms offer very quick and efficient service, often with 24-hour turnaround time for urgent documents. Transcribed files can be obtained even faster, but the rates charged are higher.

Recorded legal proceedings can be sent across the Internet to the transcribing firm or individual, who similarly sends the transcribed version to the client. All this is done on secure server, and records are generally maintained at the transcriptionist’s end for future reference in the case of loss or damage.

Legal transcription jobs are high paying as highly qualified and skilled personnel are employed. India, which has a large, educated, English-speaking populace, is the preferred destination for outsourced legal transcription jobs. Advantages of outsourcing are:

– Attorneys can concentrate on more important tasks
– Attorneys can significantly reduce the number of secretaries they employ
– Costs are cut

Training in legal transcription is provided by many firms. Some of them offer online learning programs that include synopsis of laws, legal systems, and legal issues and proceedings. One can also train in different specialties of law, such as, business law, international law, or criminal law. Basic English grammar rules and typing skills are also taught in these training programs. Post-training, many of these training providers offer home-based legal transcription opportunities.

To sum up, if you not want to argue in court, but want to help attorneys do so, legal transcription could be a great career option. Get a degree in law or a related field, invest in a computer and a broadband Internet connection, and get ready to work from home.