Upon reviewing a reporter's transcript for an appeal, is there anything that can be done if you know that there is missing pertinent dialogue?? In other words is there a way to amend the reporter's transcript?? Citations would be useful. Thanks!
Administrative Law Lawyer
California's licensing agency for court reporters is the CA Court Reporters Board. Where the consumer/litigant believes that a transcript of court or legal proceedings certified by a licensed CSR is defective, there are only very limited processes available to attempt redress.
If you can persuade the court that something is missing and you can establish what is missing, then the court can make an order for amendment or corrections to the transcript. That hardly ever happens because it is very rare that a party can meet the burden to establish what is missing, if anything.But some courts keep very detailed notes and some are even using electronic devices on the bench these days, so if the missing matter is significant, it may be worthwhile to make a request of the court to consider the issue.
You can independently contact the reporter and ask him/her to review the notes and/or audio recordings. You can also contact the California certifying agency -- the Court Reporters Board -- and make a complaint at https://www.dca.ca.gov/webapps/crb/complaints.php. The Board will investigate, but the nature of the problem defeats most meaningful investigation and enforcement processes. How do you prove what is missing? That anything is missing?
The most promising situation is where the Board has received previous complaints about the same reporter, or where the court will join in the statement that remembered material is not there or is not accurately reported. Even stipulations of defective transcript by multiple or all counsel for the parties will not be of much use in causing any meaningful remedy.
If your objective is to obtain a meaningful remedy, I am sorry to say that it is very unlikely that there will be one.
Christine McCall, License Advocates Law Group
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You can file at the Court of Appeal a Motion to Correct the Record. There is a rule of court for that, which you can find by reviewing the appellate rules.
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Criminal Defense Attorney
I agree with both Ms. McCall and Mr. Fox. This is a difficult process. Based on your request for citations, I assume you are pro per. I think you need the assistance of counsel.
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