A court reporter is also referred to as a court stenographer, a real-time writer, or a certified shorthand reporter (CSR).
They transcribe every spoken word during legal proceedings like trials.
This renders a court reporter a vital component of the justice system.
Individuals aspiring to become court reporters need a license, and here, I will outline the necessary pathway for obtaining licensure, so read on!
Article Table of Contents
- 1 Complete Your Education as a Court Reporter in New Jersey
- 2 Obtain Licensure as a Court Reporter in New Jersey
- 3 Court Reporter Salary in New Jersey
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions
Complete Your Education as a Court Reporter in New Jersey
To become licensed, you must first complete a training course.
Moreover, the program must gain approval from the New Jersey Board of Court Reporting.
However, to enroll in such a program, you need to:
- Hold a high school diploma or a GED
- Be at least 18 years old
The training programs can specialize in various areas, including:
- Judicial Reporting
- Professional Transcription
- Office Assistant
- Court and Realtime Reporting
Prospective students must verify that the curriculum has been sanctioned by CASE (Council on Approved Student Education).
It should encompass subjects such as:
- Applied Writing I
- Medical Terminology
- Legal Terminology
- Civil and Criminal Law Terminology
- Realtime Reporting I
- Realtime Reporting II
Usually, the program is offered at the postsecondary non-degree level.
Certificate and diploma programs, as well as associate’s and bachelor’s degrees, are all available and accepted.
Here are some of the institutions you can consider for your training.
This institution provides a program in court reporting, closed captioning, and CART.
You can attend the classes online at your own pace.
No specific prerequisites are needed for enrollment.
The objective of the program is to have you transcribe up to 225 words per minute.
For students who don’t require a stenotype machine, the program costs $6,104, while those needing the machine will need to pay $7,899.
While enrolled, students will have access to the CAT program, but they’ll need to purchase it for their careers.
Essex County College
This college offers an Associate in Applied Science degree in Court Reporting Technology for individuals aspiring to become court reporters.
Enrollment is typically open for the fall semester, and specific requirements must be met to graduate.
The main requirement is achieving at least a “C” grade in the following:
- All Court Reporting courses
- Any other course mandated by NCRA’s Council
Additionally, students need to attain a minimum accuracy of 96% in four tests, each lasting five minutes.
These tests include:
- 225 words per minute testimony (two-voice)
- 200 wpm jury charge
- 180 wpm literary
Furthermore, a 50-hour internship is obligatory, with 40 hours dedicated to transcription.
|Rutgers University||57 US Highway 1 New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8554|
|Essex County College||303 University Ave, Newark, NJ 07102|
Obtain Licensure as a Court Reporter in New Jersey
Once your education is completed, you must pass an exam to acquire your license.
You have 18 months to do so following the completion of your training.
During this period, you can obtain a temporary license, although this option cannot be renewed.
You can earn one of these certifications:
- NCRA’s Registered Professional Reporter (RPR) certification
- NVRA’s (National Verbatim Reporters Association) Certified Verbatim Reporter (CVR)
Both of these certifications hold national recognition.
To obtain the actual New Jersey license, you must pass a skills examination as well.
This can be administered by either of these organizations:
- Payment of appropriate fees
- $200 for the license
- $50 for the application
- Presenting proof of completion of the training program
- Completing the application form
The ACRA test closely resembles both the NCRA and the NVRA exams.
The NCRA skills test can be taken online, whereas the other two tests must be taken in person.
For those aiming to become a registered professional reporter, the fees are:
- $120 if you’re not a member
- $95 if you are a member
- $77 if you’re a student member
The fee for the NVRA exam is $125.
To become a certified verbatim reporter, you can pay a transfer fee of $50 if you are already a registered professional reporter.
The Certified Court Reporter (CCR) skills exam costs $75.
The test comprises three separate sections, each lasting five minutes.
To pass, you must meet the wordcount requirements in these three areas:
- Literary at 180 wpm
- Jury charge at 200 wpm
- Testimony/Q&A at 225 wpm
Candidates are allowed 75 minutes to transcribe their notes, and the minimum passing accuracy score in New Jersey is 95%.
There’s also a written knowledge exam for the registered professional reporter, containing 120 questions covering technology, professional practices, ethics, and reporting practices.
The minimum passing score is 70, and the fees are as follows:
- $220 if you’re not a member
- $195 if you are a member
- $160 if you’re a student member
The NVRA exam costs $125.
Court Reporter License Renewal in New Jersey
In New Jersey, certified court reporters are required to fulfill 14 continuing education credits over two years.
A minimum of 10 credits must pertain to core court reporting subjects.
The CRRA-NJ organizes educational seminars and gatherings throughout the year, which are considered valid for accruing continuing education credits.
Court Reporter Salary in New Jersey
If you’ve followed along, it indicates your interest in this profession and its potential earnings.
In New Jersey, the median annual salary for a court reporter is $68,059.
In the following table, you’ll find the cities with the highest median salaries in this field.Annual Salary Range: Annual Salary by Location:
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
|West New York||$72,640|
Frequently Asked Questions
Which courts hire court reporters in New Jersey?
All of the state’s courts hire court reporters.
Here are some examples:
- Appellate Courts
- Superior Court
- District Courts
What other requirements are there to become a court reporter in New Jersey?
Candidates for licensure must ensure they:
- Are an American citizen
- Have a photo not older than 6 months
What skills do I need to become a court reporter in New Jersey?
Here are some of the main skills and abilities of a court reporter, regardless of state:
- Good hearing
- Able to sit for long periods
- Word knowledge
- English / grammar skills
- Good use of both hands
- Able to handle stress
- Good organizational skills