Best Practices for Conducting Arbitration Hearings Remotely

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Since the pandemic started at the beginning of 2020, everything changed. Everyone had to change their ways, trying very hard to keep themselves protected from the virus. Businesses had to consider adding the virtual option. Even court reporting services had to be online. There is no doubt that the coronavirus pandemic has changed the world in an instant. With this arbitration hearings remotely came into light and you will read about best practices for same in this article.

When the pandemic hit the world, everyone who was in the middle of their arbitration hearing had to stop. At that moment, nobody knew what was going to happen next. The only thing that was sure was that the courts were closed to keep everyone safe from acquiring the virus that already killed millions all over the world.

With quick thinking and the dire need to get things going, court reporting services had to be conducted online. Video calls had to be set up. And before everyone could take a breath, video hearings became the new thing. What seemed like the future of arbitration instantly became its present norm.

While it may seem as if these court hearings online are much like the regular face-to-face type, it requires careful consideration. In fact, in the short span of time that lawyers and court officials have been into it, they have come up with their own list of best practices when it comes to conducting court reporting services online. With each new change comes a new norm.

Here’s a list of the best practices when conducting arbitration hearings remotely:

Consider the technology used.

Zoom has gained momentum in taking over the world of business when the pandemic began. It is a highly recommended platform when conducting video calls and conference meetings including court services. Perhaps the best thing about Zoom technology is that it is efficient and accessible to everyone minus the cost.

Several individuals can be in the same meeting while screen sharing can be an option to display exhibits and other court-needed demonstratives. While it may seem as if it is the perfect platform, several privacy and security concerns have been raised about Zoom. There are several other court reporting servicesavailable as options. They offer practically the same features as Zoom, but they are a bit more expensive.

It’s all about transcriptions.

Every lawyer knows the value of good transcription services and that it is something they should clearly invest in. Even court reporting services like transcription have made themselves available remotely. For a good rate, lawyers can be given access to live transcription while the hearing is going on. They usually offer rates that cover daily services.

A proper translation is necessary.

Conducting court reporting servicesonline comes with several factors that make it complicated. One of the things that need careful consideration is the translation requirement. While the services of several translators have been made available online, there is a difference in the kind of translation that they can provide. The product of remote translation is usually sequential, instead of the usual simultaneous results. Also, speakers during the court hearing cannot speak at the same time. The overlapping of voices could make it impossible for a good translation to be recorded, not to mention that it may be a bit more difficult to understand for all participants, including the judge.

Always test the technology before use.

Technical glitches have been greatly associated with group meetings and conferences. But when it comes to court reporting services, there is no room for such types of errors. This is why it is a must that all parties involved ensure that their technical connection is thoroughly checked in advance before the actual date of the hearing. The tribunal, all the parties involved, and even the court associates must make sure that their cameras are working just fine. Most importantly, everyone must ensure that they have a reliable internet connection at the time of the hearing. While technical glitches may happen to anyone at any given time, checking the technology before its actual usage does help prevent the worst from happening.

Agree on a protocol to follow.

All parties involved in the scheduledcourt reporting services must meet beforehand to agree on a protocol. They should have this protocol in written form signed by representatives of both parties to minimize the possibility of any potential dispute. Details such as the schedule, the deadlines for pre and post hearings, including the exchange of exhibits must all be agreed upon before the actual hearing. Other logistical matters that may come into play involving the two parties should be settled as well. Having a protocol limits the chances of unwanted disputes that could only lengthen or impede the delivery of justice.

Consider evidence presentation.

When choosing which platform to use for conducting arbitration hearings remotely, it is a must that you pick the one that will allow both parties to present their evidence. Everyone included in the hearing must be able to access it. The display of these pieces of evidence plays a huge role in the success of one’s presentation in court. When it seems impossible to happen, such a glitch could impede the process of the hearing and could only result in something that is of no good. Zoom allows all parties involved in the hearing to have access to such features. It is also particularly helpful to all those involved if specific pages or sections of especially long documents to be highlighted or pinpoint in advance. This will make the meeting and the discussion as seamless as possible.

If only lawyers and court officials could choose, they would rather go back to the system that they have been using for years. The protocols, as well as practices, have been in place for a good reason. And yet, the pandemic has pushed everyone to look into other options and thus the new protocols for court-ordered hearings are in place at the moment.

It may take a while before people are able to adjust to it, but it will have to do. With these best practices in place, no one will ever have to be denied justice, whether face to face or done arbitration hearings remotely.

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