Category Archive: Remote Deposition

Making Your Remote Office a Success

With the unique challenge of working and keeping businesses going during COVID-19, having a remote office has become our new normal but it can still be an unknown, possibly even stressful, factor amid these disruptive and uncertain times.

It’s more important now than ever to keep your mental and emotional well-being in check, as well as that of your employees and staff.

SET SCHEDULES 

Keeping a regular, and realistic, schedule is vital. Plan your day as if you were in the office with a start time, lunch time and quitting time. Make sure you allow technology-free time to pamper yourself, whether that’s reading a book, working on a jigsaw puzzle or a soothing bath.

HAVE A DEDICATED WORK SPACE

You don’t need a room specifically for your home office but find space that is to be your work area during work hours. This can be a corner in your bedroom, living room or on your kitchen table. Tell your family this is your work area during your scheduled work times. After hours, it can go back to its intended use.

GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK 

Working from home doesn’t (and shouldn’t) mean parking yourself at your desk 24-7. Your mind and body need breaks throughout the day so be sure to take them, preferably every 30 to 60 minutes. It may be getting up to stretch for a few minutes or getting a glass of water. On phone calls, get in the habit of standing rather than sitting to keep that blood flowing.

BUT WATCH OUT FOR THOSE DISTRACTIONS!

Working from home can be wonderful (saving on gas and travel time with no commute and hey, you don’t even have to wear shoes!) but being at home can lend to a host of distractions. Don’t let your laundry, that Harry Potter marathon or social media impact your productivity.

STAY CONNECTED

That said, social media is a wonderful way to keep in touch, not only with family but also co-workers. The office is not only a place to work but also a method to combat loneliness and isolation. Working from home, especially for extroverts, can create anxiety. So check in with your co-workers, not just to discuss work-related matters but also fun things, like sharing recipes and family and pet photos.

AND GET FRESH AIR

Fresh air and sunshine are a necessity. With fewer people driving, and warmer weather upon most of us, getting away from your desk, out the door and into the environment is fundamental. Not only will it invigorate you but will keep your immune system healthy.

SHARPEN YOUR SKILLS

If your workload is lighter than normal, it’s the perfect time to investigate some online courses that will improve your skills, raise the value of your expertise and give you continuing education credit. As a bonus, it also takes your mind off economic worries.

DON’T FORGET YOUR EMPLOYEES

If you’re in management, it’s imperative not to neglect your employees. Understand that they might be feeling anxious, overworked and even isolated. Make yourself available to address any issues they might have. Have regular meetings by video or phone to keep everyone up to date. Let your staff know the best way to reach you with questions or emergencies. Find out if your health plan offers support for insureds who may need it and pass that information along.

 

Lastly, smile and breathe!

Thank You!

While the world is going through this difficult time dealing with COVID-19, we wanted to take a moment to thank our clients for their continued support.  We really appreciate you!

REMOTE DEPOSITION SECURITY – KEEPING YOUR DEPO PRIVATE

 

Recent concern has been raised regarding the security of Zoom meetings with the onset of a new trend called “Zoombombing.” Never heard of it? Imagine photobombing, but through video conference. Possibly, with graphic content. The trend has gotten so much attention that Zoom’s CEO spoke out about the incidents on Good Morning America.  How can you keep your Zoom deposition private and secure? Below are some remote deposition security strategies to keep the hackers at bay.

PASSWORD PROTECTION

Zoom meetings are set up without a password by default. Zoombombers are taking advantage of this to gain access to private meetings. When you schedule your meeting, always set a unique password for the meeting. It will be included in the invitation you sent to the other attendees.

MEETING ROOM LOCKOUT

The hackers responsible for these attacks join meeting that are actively taking place and then screen share inappropriate content, causing disruptions and intruding on your private Zoom meeting. You can combat this by locking the Zoom meeting after all the party members have arrived. This will prevent any unwanted trolls from wreaking havoc during your deposition. The host simply needs to click “Manage Participants” in the meeting, and under the “More option” choose “Lock.”

HOSTING WITH EGCR

By hosting your remote deposition with
Elizabeth Gallo Court Reporting you are working with an experienced court reporting firm that is familiar with multiple videoconferencing platforms and can implement these security strategies for you to keep your online witness testimony private. If Zoom is your preferred platform, we can also implement additional privacy options, including breakout rooms so you and your client can convene in private during breaks and locking down the private chat feature so none of the parties can converse during take-down without the knowledge of the group.

NEED EVEN MORE SECURITY?

We offer several platform options for remote depositions. Contact us to find the best fit for your firm.

Handling Exhibits During a Remote Deposition

With the rise of depositions by video conferencing, a lot of attorneys may be wondering “What about the exhibits?” Just because you have exhibits doesn’t mean that you can’t take advantage of remote depositions. Here is some information on how you can conduct a remote deposition – with exhibits.

Video Conferencing – The Old Way

Remote depositions are hosted using video conference services. These services are great for sharing audio and video footage from participants in any location in a very easy and user-friendly way. In many ways it can feel like everyone is in the same room. However, the reality that each participant is many miles away become glaringly obvious the moment when you realize you want to share a document in front of you with the other participants. What can you do? You could try to email the document to the group for viewing. In our experience this creates a delay during the deposition while email addresses are confirmed, and while time is given to allow the participants to search their inboxes for the shared document. In desperate situations, we have heard of participants holding pages up to their cameras hoping that it will focus enough for the rest of the group to read. None of this makes for a smooth deposition, or a clean record. Our solution? Share documents digitally!

Digitally Sharing Exhibits

Most video conferencing services have native solutions for “screen sharing” during a video conference allowing participants to easily show their own screen to the rest of the group. This is how you can share exhibits during your deposition! To take advantage of these features, make sure that you have digital scans of all the exhibits you would like to use prior to your scheduled remote deposition. Once you’re ready to show your exhibit, use your video conference’s screen sharing feature to show all participants your document in a clear, readable form right there inside of your video conference software. When you are finished, simply disable the screen sharing feature to return to the normal video conferencing view. Using this method is easy and prevents interruptions to your proceedings.

Pro Tip: Open your document in full screen before connecting to your video conference so it will be the first thing everyone sees when you are ready to share.

Why Have Your Remote Deposition with EGCR?

All remote depositions conducted by Elizabeth Gallo Court Reporting have the above feature, and several others including:

  • Preparation of a pre-marked, digital exhibit binder for use during your deposition
  • Exhibit handling by a court reporter trained in remote depositions
  • Ability of your reporter to mark exhibits in real time should plans change with the use of digital exhibit stamps complete with a date-stamp  (compliments of our international sister company Ancillary Legal Corporation)

Interested in scheduling a Remote Deposition, but feeling a little nervous? Ask about our free client training available to those who schedule a remote deposition with Elizabeth Gallo Court Reporting.

Be sure to take advantage of our  Remote Deposition Checklist  and our video tutorial.