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Old July 7th, 2008, 05:30 PM   #1
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Any of you do Legal Videography?

I'm considering adding Legal videography as a service. I understand there is not certification required, but don't quote me on that. Do any of you have experience with this type of videography?

Thanks
Evan
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Old July 8th, 2008, 06:10 AM   #2
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I don't do any legal videography myself, but my best friend owns a legal videography business in Philadelphia. In Pennsylvania you must be state certified as a court reporter. So it varies from state to state. Check with a lawyer in your area, they could probably point you in the right direction to get started.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 09:34 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William Smyth View Post
In Pennsylvania you must be state certified as a court reporter.
Interesting. I do legal videography all over the Mid Atlantic including Pennsylvania and I'm not a certified court reporter. I'm not even a certified legal videographer. There is no law stating you have to be certified in any state or on the federal level as far as I'm aware and believe me I've done plenty of research.

As to the original poster's query, legal videography is a great way to make your bread and butter. It can be incredibly exciting or overwhelmingly boring. Certification comes by way of the American Guild of Court Videographers. This organization is a private for profit company. It's certification is not recognized by any court in the country. Unfortunately there is no standard for this service right now. But there are federal and some state guidelines as to the gathering of evidence that you must follow to have what you do be admissible in court.

I do between 4 and 10 jobs a month so it does fluctuate quite a bit. I make between $400 and $900 a day. Your are usually hired by a court reporting firm who is hired by the lawyer. I have never had a lawyer contact me directly which is fine by me. The firms who hire me do so because they know they can count on me to show up on time, be professional and courteous, and deliver a quality product with a minimal amount of fuss.

Keep in mind, this is not creative work. I provide a service, plain and simple. But it provides me with a base income that allows me to pursue the kind of work I love to do which is working with non profits and producing documentaries. And it beats the crap out of doing weddings IMO. Hope that helps.

Mick Haensler
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Old July 8th, 2008, 10:29 AM   #4
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Mike,

What exactly do you deliver to the client? Is it an uncut DVD of the deposition or do you clean up the parts where nobody is talking. Also how do you address the sound issue? I've heard some guys use Lavs others use condenser mics, others only a shotgun mounted on the camera.

I've checked out the Guild. It appears to be worth while. If for nothing else than to learn the paperwork side of it. I understand they also teach you how to market yourself.

If you like, you can contact me personally, so we don't bore the other guys on here.

My email is
aevanlloyd@yahoo.com

Thanks
Evan
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Old July 8th, 2008, 11:48 AM   #5
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Please ... bother us. I'd like to know as well.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 01:03 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mick Haensler View Post
Interesting. I do legal videography all over the Mid Atlantic including Pennsylvania and I'm not a certified court reporter. I'm not even a certified legal videographer. There is no law stating you have to be certified in any state or on the federal level as far as I'm aware and believe me I've done plenty of research.

As to the original poster's query, legal videography is a great way to make your bread and butter. It can be incredibly exciting or overwhelmingly boring. Certification comes by way of the American Guild of Court Videographers. This organization is a private for profit company. It's certification is not recognized by any court in the country. Unfortunately there is no standard for this service right now. But there are federal and some state guidelines as to the gathering of evidence that you must follow to have what you do be admissible in court.

I do between 4 and 10 jobs a month so it does fluctuate quite a bit. I make between $400 and $900 a day. Your are usually hired by a court reporting firm who is hired by the lawyer. I have never had a lawyer contact me directly which is fine by me. The firms who hire me do so because they know they can count on me to show up on time, be professional and courteous, and deliver a quality product with a minimal amount of fuss.

Keep in mind, this is not creative work. I provide a service, plain and simple. But it provides me with a base income that allows me to pursue the kind of work I love to do which is working with non profits and producing documentaries. And it beats the crap out of doing weddings IMO. Hope that helps.

Mick Haensler
Higher Ground Media
Hmmm. Now, I'll have to check with him to see if I have my facts correct. Before he launched his own business, he worked for a legal videography business and had to get certified as a court reporter. And, he requires all his employees to have certification. I always thought it was a state requirement, now I'll have to see if it's just something that his clients prefer.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 04:02 PM   #7
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another vote for more details....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan Lloyd View Post
What exactly do you deliver to the client? Is it an uncut DVD of the deposition or do you clean up the parts where nobody is talking. Also how do you address the sound issue? I've heard some guys use Lavs others use condenser mics, others only a shotgun mounted on the camera.
Consider this another vote in favor of getting some more technical equipment spec info.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 05:32 PM   #8
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Hi Evan,

I've done a few.

Do a search for "Legal Videography", you'll find a number of threads about it - including my experience.

Harold
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Old July 8th, 2008, 06:41 PM   #9
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I thought the posting title said "lethal videography"

is "legal" videography a US thing? I've never heard of it.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 07:10 PM   #10
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Hi David,

I suspect it's most everywhere, at least for countries with any kind of Legal system.

Not "Lethal", but rather boring sometimes. My problem was the sitting still for long periods of time - not good for my butt, hips, and knees.

Try searching for "Depositions" too. Lots of posts about the subject.

Harold
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Old July 8th, 2008, 07:52 PM   #11
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I found loads of good information on DVi. I did a search for Legal Videography and Deposition videography.

I'm definitely going to get involved in this. My Dad, 3 uncles, 2 cousins, and loads of people from church are all attorneys. Plus I'm going to Law school in 2010, so I consider it good training.

Thanks for all of your replies.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 08:08 PM   #12
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Yes there is a ton of info out there on the subject. It has been a lucrative and rewarding adjunct to my business. It isn't for everyone, just like wedding videography isn't for everyone. I personally find the practice of law fascinating. I don't find the practice of matrimony in our current climate fascinating in the least.

Now what about joining the two. I'm talkin' wedding videos being used as admissible evidence in a divorce proceeding. Think about it. Over 50% of wedding videos end up in the trash after 5 years anyway, put 'em to good use!!

"World's colliding Jerry.......WORLD'S COLLIDING!!!!

I'm way to jaded

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Old July 8th, 2008, 11:30 PM   #13
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Clvs

Ive been shooting depositions for 4 months now. I got certified through the NCRA as a CLVS. The reporting firm I work with has 10 videographers. 4 of us are certified. Im doing 1-3 depositions a week Dont know if that helps you are not. Im NOT a court reporter though. I was also told but dont know if its true, that the NCRA certification draws more money.
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