The Big Apple (also known as New York City or NYC) has been the official “land of opportunity” for so many people, U.S. citizens and people arriving from other countries and homelands. Diversity and opportunity are what makes New York City so rich in culture. The people who live and work in New York City can earn the top tier of wages available, no matter what their profession.
Your career salary is also dependent on supply and demand: If there is a greater need for your product or services, then your skills will be “in-demand,” which usually means employers are willing to pay more for your professional services. There is an increased demand for court reporters in New York City.
The need is now.
The National Court Reporters Association predicted a serious shortage of court reporters by 2018, but the reality of this shortage became evident as early as 2014, when a major cable, internet and satellite network, CNBC, called the shortage of court reporters a crisis when they said that “court reporting is not only not a dying field, but the demand for court reporters is expected to rise sharply within the next few years. And it’s not just NCRA touting this fact. Jane Wells (CNBC business news) reports that America is suffering from a serious shortage of court reporters.”
Court reporting is very much an in-demand profession! A court reporter in NYC can earn more there than anywhere else in the United States. It depends on how you want to work (The Bureau of Labor Statistics [BLS] divides the major working venues for court reporters into local, state and federal government; business support, and motion picture/video industries.), and how often or how many hours you want to work.
Some court reporters align themselves with an agency, but many work as independent contractors, sometimes called freelance court reporters. They work on a per-contract or per-job basis, and they can choose which type of service, location and the number of hours they want to work. Whether you’re a full-time, salaried court reporter in NYC or a freelance court reporter in NYC, you can also make extra money selling your transcripts to interested parties. Your degree, certification, and wpm (words per minute) may qualify you to work as a:
- Broadcast captioner – Your court reporter in NYC skills are necessary to become a broadcast captioner or stenocaptioner, providing live television broadcasts to hard-of-hearing viewers. You can work for local television stations, sport venues, national networks, and translate emergency news broadcasts.
- CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) provider for live-event captioning – CART reporting is needed now more than ever in our history, as our dynamic and demanding Baby Boomers age. Hard-of-hearing and deaf people have equal rights to information, so being able to convert speech into text, almost immediately, using your stenotype machine, can be a rewarding profession.
- Freelance court reporter – This might be the best of all worlds for a court reporter in NYC! Independent contractors are employed by attorneys, boards of directors, political and other convention holders, large companies/corporations and their stockholders.
- Judicial court reporter – A court reporter in NYC may see a lot of drama at work! In addition to being able to use your stenograph machine to transfer the spoken proceedings into a readable document, you may also need to capture gestures and emotions, like anger or confusion. This might be the most rewarding of all the court reporter professions, because you are a part of history; your transcripts are the source by which laws and decisions are made. A serious, professional demeanor is important as is confidentiality. Your transcripts may contain information that is important to the law or government.
- Webcaster – Many meetings now take place online, and translation is needed for those events. For example, if a company is having a telephone conference, it may be necessary to translate the spoken words to text that is visible on listeners personal computers. Being able to transfer and/or display graphs, documents or charts may be required.
Learn what you need and you can earn what you want.
In May 2014, the BLS reported annual earnings for a court reporter in NYC from $61,950 to $88,420+. You could begin earning that salary as quickly as 24 months from now! In other states, like Florida and Maryland, court reporters would probably see annual salaries between $40,000 – $41,690. The average annual wage for the U.S. court reporters is $55,000.
Becoming a court reporter in NYC is not only providing a service that is seriously needed, it might be one of the best-paying jobs with the most flexibility! No matter where you are in your life – right out of high school, a young adult with small children, an older adult with teens or a retiree who wants a part-time income, court reporting can be the career that works with your lifestyle for the rest of your life.