Carolyn Bodley - Legal Verbatim Transcriptionist of Audio, Video & Digital Files

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blog entries are strictly the opinion of Carolyn Bodley and may not reflect the opinion of others

(to see archived blog entries, click on the links to the right of the top blog)

Some photos are compressed or removed in archived blog postings, leaving only a description of the photo. The blog postings remain complete and unchanged.

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Friday, December 21, 2007

BLOG - Misconception of Buying on Price Alone
I am a true believer that you really do get what you pay for, and the consequences are noticeable:

Hire a public defender or hire a $200 plus an hour attorney.  What outcome are you going for?

Hire someone that types 30-50 words per minute whose initial rate on paper is far less expensive than my 120 wpm rate -- however, it will take 3-4 times (or maybe even more) longer to complete, and you will end up paying more for the "cheap" rate.

Calling around for mobile notary services -- making the appointment and then calling around some more for a cheaper notary.  Again, what is the final outcome you are going for?

I am a business person and know the costs of doing business.  My business is not a kitchen table setup where I do this for fun, or some pocket change to jingle in my pocket.  I know what my business licenses and registrations cost, what my business expenses/costs are, what my business insurance costs, what my taxes cost, and what my equipment and supplies cost.  My clients ALWAYS get more than what they are paying for.  My costs are fair and reasonable for the service(s) I'm hired to perform. 

Shop around and you will find plenty of people charging less than me.  Check their skills, experience, knowledge and expertise -- ask yourself if you are you paying for the lack of same?

I don't operate a business on the "auction" theory -- so please don't call after initially hiring me to say you found someone cheaper and ask if I want to counter their offer -- BECAUSE I WON'T.  If you are dissatisfied or unhappy with the outcome of a cheaper service, consider why they are cheaper.
[end of blog]
9:05 am mst 

Thursday, December 13, 2007

BLOG-Supply and Demand or Taking Advantage
The situation occurred in another state -- a "mobile" notary is contacted to meet an individual (less than 10 minutes away) at 10:45 p.m. to notarize a one-page document.  It may not be a brutal rape, however, it should be considered a crime -- this notary quoted a fee of $125.00.  This particular state allows a notary to charge $10.00 per notarization, plus REASONABLE time/travel charges.

Please be advised that the Colorado Secretary of State allows a Colorado Notary to charge a fee of $5.00 per notarization.  If you come to me, the notarization charge is what you will be responsible for -- if I come to you as a "mobile" notary, you will be responsible for the notarization charge plus a REASONABLE travel charge.  

For any person in need of a general notarization, do some price checking.
[end of blog]
6:30 am mst 

Monday, December 3, 2007

BLOG - When the Price Sounds too Good
I should have been skeptical when I received the signing call -- what with today's mortgage market, the over-saturation of notary signing agents, and the companies that once paid well - now wanting to cut rates drastically.  The reason for the skepticism -- being offering just under $300 for a "single" a couple of miles away -- where in 2007, it has become more the norm to  be offered $100-$125 from title companies, or less than $70 from signing services.

The first indication that there was going to be a problem with this signing was when I placed my introductory call to Borrowers.  The contact number was a fax.  After obtaining an alternate number, the voice message was in Spanish -- I do not speak Spanish.  Advising that I couldn't do the signing, the loan officer assured both the Escrow Officer and myself that there would be someone at the house that spoke English. 

Since loan documents are date-sensitive (and it is against the law to backdate), after having the documents for two weeks and no contact from Borrowers, I shipped everything back to Escrow.  The very next day the loan officer calls to tell me that Borrowers are ready to sign the documents that day.

What a surprise when I read about the very same signing a couple days later.  It seems that Escrow, already knowing, from my experience, that the Borrowers speak no English, hired another notary signing agent without confirming whether they could speak/understand Spanish.  Being misled into a signing where they speak no Spanish, the notary posted the assignment on an open forum looking for a Spanish-speaking signing agent.

I honestly believe that, two weeks ago, the loan officer never told Escrow that Borrowers didn't speak English.  However, Escrow was well aware of it when they hired the second notary signing agent and failed to tell them that Borrowers spoke only Spanish.  Initially, I place 90% of the fault on the loan officer -- however, with the second attempt to get this loan signed, I place the entire fault on the Escrow officer.
[end of blog]
7:25 am mst 

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With a typing speed of 120 wpm, Carolyn Bodley began offering independent contractor/secretarial and transcription services to the Denver metro legal community in 1992.

I am not a court reporter or medical transcriptionist and I don't videotape depositions -- I'm strictly a legal transcriptionist which means putting spoken words on paper. All my transcripts contain a certification stating that to the best of my knowledge, belief and ability, the audio/video I received has not been altered in any way, and the transcript is true, accurate and complete. I have never been advised that a court rejected one of my audio or video transcripts. If my transcript is rejected by the court, you will be reimbursed in full for my services. Because I certify that the transcript is true and complete, the entire audio/video must be transcribed--I am unable to transcribe "just a portion" that you need. 

I guarantee that your transcripts will be typed confidentially, accurately and with attention to detail at a fair price.

  • Discovery is often turned over in a format other than hard copy. This discovery includes, but is not limited to, recorded telephone conversations, police interviews, depositions, investigations, witness statements, and more. The audio and video "words" need to be put to paper, and your already overworked legal staff often don't have the skills, equipment, the inclination or the time.
  • Discovery is often the deciding factor of whether a case goes to trial. Most of us hear, but do we listen? Recently I transcribed a video that had been viewed and listened to several times and by several people before I transcribed it. There was a one sentence statement that not one person caught -- this one sentence was not the only reason the case was dismissed one day before trial--however, it carried quite a bit of weight -- and I'm the only one that "heard" it. Had the video never been transcribed, how many other words would never have been heard?

Add-On Services:

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  • spiral binding
  • proofreading/editing your work product

Your Documents are Your Reputation ...
Making Them Look Good is Mine!©1992-2016 Carolyn Bodley

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