Legal transcription is the act of writing down, or in this, case typing, recordings that are created in the legal industries. These could be notes by the lawyers (so that other lawyers can easily read them), interviews with clients and legal documents, such as contracts.
One of the most basic skills you need for any type of transcription job is typing and keyboarding. You will need to be able to type quickly and accurately. There are several online programs that can help you increase your speed like typingtest.com. Most legal transcription jobs have a minimum requirement for typing speed, generally about 60 wpm (words per minute). You will also need to know the 10-key pad located on the right hand side of most keyboards.
Along with typing and keyboarding, you will need an understanding of basic Word formatting for the notes that need transcribing. For contracts and other legal documents, we will discuss those particular things in just a few moments.
While a specific education is not required, there are some educational requirements that many legal transcription clients want. These will include at least a high school diploma or GED. Many will also require a certification in transcription, legal terminology, a basic understanding of the legal world such as the difference between tort law, criminal law and contractual law.
There are legal transcription certification courses offered at a variety of educational institutions, both online and physical locations. By checking into them, you will know the specific requirements for each place.
There is a wide variety of training that can be useful to increase your employ-ability as a legal transcriptionist. One of the most common courses and certifications that are needed is that of legal terminology. These courses help you to learn the variety of legal words, which are often Latin-based words that are commonly used. As legal terminology is the basics of a legal practice, you will need to not only understand how the words are spelled and pronounced, but what they mean and how they are used.
You will also need at least a very basic understanding of the various legal documents and how they are prepared. This will include what kind of forms there are, what information will need to be in them and the formatting. This can be done with a few courses in business law or even a course in legal forms.
As with all types of transcription jobs, it depends on the specific job, the location of the job i.e. at home (freelance), in an individual office or for a large company. Rates of pay can be by the audio hour, by the page, by the project or hourly. By the page can generally range a few dollars per page as most require several pages of type written documents.
By the audio hour generally runs from $5.00 =$15.00 or more and is based solely on how many recorded hours you transcribe, not on the time it took you to transcribe it. By the project is generally for freelancers and tends to depend on the size of the project.
Hourly, which is what many companies and offices pay will depend on your state’s minimum wage. Often, those that work for companies are eligible for benefits.
Now that you know some of the information and requirements about legal transcription jobs, let’s discuss where you can find these jobs.
TranscriptionJobsHQ.com: We have partnered with top companies to offer you a very easy-to-use job search engine that pulls all listings from Simply Hired, Monster, and Indeed to show you just about all of the legal transcription jobs that you can find on the internet. If you can’t find your job here feel free to keep searching elsewhere, but we are confident that our database has most of them.
Upwork.com: The transcription jobs on this website range from large to small. Once you create a profile, start out by charging a reasonable rate by audio/video minute and then build up your profile to eventually have a higher cost and repeated clients. It takes some time, but this can be a great way to get multiple clients coming back over and over again.
Rev.com: This is a great company to join if you'd like consistent transcription work provided to you. The problem with joining this company is that you'll be paid less per audio minute because they have to make money too, but they are very consistent with the work that they get.
Simplyhired.com: This is a job listing site that covers a wide range of industries. You can search by keywords such as transcription or corporate transcription. You will want to have a general cover letter that you can edit for each job and a relevant resume as you apply directly to the company itself. These jobs can be at home or in an office.
Careerbuilder.com: One of the largest of the job listing sites, careerbuilder.com has been around for well over 15 years. Again, you will want to upload a relevant resume and have a general cover letter that you can review and edit for specific companies. Since companies can also search the database for relevant workers, it is good to have a copy there as well.
Again, using key words, you will search the database for relevant jobs and apply per the specifics listed in the job details.
Monster.com: Another large job listing site, you can upload resumes, use the resume builder, develop cover letters, search the database for position and review job details. You will apply to each job per the instructions listed in the job details.