Rosalie’s Advice to Court Reporters: Accessing Veritext Virtual Via the Partner Portal
By Rosalie Kramm – CSR – Principal, San Diego
Today I accessed my first Veritext Virtual deposition via the new single sign-on feature in the Partner Portal! Veritext provided me with two tech people to help everything go smoothly. I learned a lot and have a few great tips I would like to give to court reporters. Personally, I found it to be super fun to have so much control over the deposition and I think court reporters will like it.
Go to your Portal. The first time you use the Single Sign-On, click the TEST CONNECTION button. It just ensures you can get into Zoom and turn on your camera and audio. It takes seconds. Then LEAVE MEETING.
It will help you if you have a printout or write down at least the last names of the people you expect to be at the deposition. You can find the attorney names on the Partner Portal by navigating to the “Appearance” section of the Attorneys Present step to help generate your Appearance Page. It is especially important to know the witness’s name since you will be looking for that person’s name later to let him/her into the deposition room.
In your Portal, click on START MEETING.
Hover your mouse over PARTICIPANTS and bring up the participants dialog box that will be on the right-hand side of your Zoom screen.
There are two groups of people in the PARTICIPANTS screen. There is only you in the meeting (and maybe a videographer if one is assigned.)
You will see another box that has people WAITING TO ATTEND. You will see the names of people in that box that are ready to come in (counsel and the witness).
If the witness gets to the waiting room early, I think it is a nice idea to write them a little message. If you click on Chat, you will see two chat boxes appear. Once says “Chat for Zoom Room.” The other says, “Chat for waiting room.” Go to the waiting room chat box and type something like. “Hello, this is Rosalie your court reporter. We are waiting for the attorneys to arrive. I will bring you into the deposition room momentarily.” The communication to the waiting room is one-way only. The witness or person in the waiting room cannot send you a message back. (But rumor is that Zoom is working on changing that so the waiting room people can write a message to the court reporter host.)
If someone sneaks into the deposition and are in the waiting room, you can ask the attorneys, “Do you expect someone named Mary Carpenter to attend this deposition?” If everyone says, “No,” you can hover over her name and remove her. I doubt that people will sneak in the deposition room ever, but who knows? That would be the remedy to remove them.
A super great thing we can do as the host is rename the people in the boxes. If someone comes in as Yesenio’s i-Phone, you can hover over the PARTICIPANTS box at any time. Then hover over the name you want to change. A little pop-up will appear, and the word More… Click on More. Then you have the option to change name. Click on change name. Then a little box appears. Write in whatever you wish. Today I had an interpreter. So I wrote in her box, “Interpreter Mary Sanchez.” I changed my name to “Court Reporter Rosalie Kramm.” One of the attorneys just had the name Joseyln. I changed her name to “Joselyn Carter.” It is easier as the court reporter to see the whole name for quick identification when different people speak.
As the host we have the power to give people the ability to screen share. In my opinion, I don’t want to mess around a lot with screen share or have to go off the record when a second attorney wants to screen share. So what I did is before the deposition began, I clicked on the SECURITY icon down at the bottom of the Zoom screen, and I gave all participants the right to screen share. I doubt very much that there would be a fight amongst participants trying to share screens. If that does happen, you can take away the right and only give it to one person at a time. That’s my personal opinion.
Before a deposition begins, I will ask the noticing attorney how they wish to present exhibits today. The attorney might say via screen share. Then I suggest that the attorney practice sharing her/his screen before the deposition. They usually are grateful for that opportunity. There is less fiddling around during the deposition since they are confident they can share.
All in all, I think having the power to be the host is a good thing for court reporters; we have the opportunity to control the room and rename boxes and it is all very user friendly and makes sense once you are in the Zoom room.
About Rosalie Kramm – CSR – Principal, San Diego
Rosalie Kramm began her career as a court reporter and owner/operator of Kramm Court Reporting in San Diego, California over 30 years ago, before joining Veritext Legal Solutions, the national leader in deposition services.
She sat on the Court Reporters Board of California with the Department of Consumer Affairs from 2013 through 2018 and has served as president of the Deposition Reporters Association of California, Society for the Technological Advancement of Reporting, and General Reporters Association of San Diego.
Kramm is a Certified Court Reporter in California and holds the national license of Certified Realtime Reporter. She also is a certified LiveNote trainer and frequent presenter for advanced workshops on the use of interactive real-time software, including Realtime with LiveNote, Summation, and Bridge. She also serves on the board of the San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program.