Transcribing legal recordings is quite a demanding job; it leaves no scape for any single error. Such low quality transcription is enough to make or break a lawyer’s reputation. And that’s precisely why, lawyers worldwide stress a lot over quality legal transcriptions!
Maintaining quality becomes all the more crucial while transcribing jury instructions. Typically recorded after all the evidences are presented in the case and following the closing arguments; it is one of the ways for the court to counsel the jury regarding the case and how to conduct their deliberations.
Jury instruction is an extensive and diverse area – the transcription by and large depends on the type of court case. Therefore, one needs to understand different types of instructions to get a firm hold and produce high-quality transcripts.
The Different Types of Jury Instructions Include:
- There are some instructions that come even before the trial begins. They are related to selecting the jury, challenges for jurors, questioning in capital cases as well as statement of the charge.
- Also, a new set of instructions usually come up once the trial begins. The jurors are supposed to go through the preliminary instructions as well as to instructions pertaining to the stipulations, closing arguments, queries by jurors, and the defendant advocating themselves.
- The next thing that comes is the final charge. These instructions consists the statement, alibis, entered pleas, evidences, crime spot, eyewitnesses testimonies, rules of deliberation and the final verdict.
- At times, it is also possible that supplemental instructions are required given out. These would be applicable when there is a jury deadlock or jury discharge.
Instructions on Crimes:
The court provide specific instructions for Criminal cases like homicides, illegal possession of weapons, kidnapping, assault, arson, burglary, gambling, fraud, racketeering, etc. Therefore, one needs to keep a close watch on these guidelines to avoid any mistakes.
Grand Jury Proceedings & Instruction:
These specific guidelines on their duties and responsibilities in court are directed to a grand jury comprising 12-23 individuals.
- Preliminary instructions for a grand jury consist of the topics like juror oath, their duties, responsibilities and the value of their work.
- In criminal cases, guidelines include “probably cause”, “true bill”, indictment, capital crimes, subpoenas, and witnesses.
- For civil cases, the jury is instructed in areas like inquiries, investigations, and conclusions, etc.
- Grand juries usually have a foreperson, vice-foreperson, a clerk, and jurors. There are specific guidelines pertaining to participant’s exact role on the grand jury.
- Other minor instructions comprises of disqualifications, jury roles, elections, oaths, verdict, and appointments.
There are special proceedings where accurate degrees of guilt are attributed to various crimes. In such cases, the jury instructions particularly address the aforementioned categories and their degree of guilt. Judgment of the level of guilt can be quite tough, so the jury guidelines in these types of special proceedings are very complex and highly detailed. Transcribing these guidelines requires a very keen ear to the details, along with a quick action in recording the audio for outstanding transcripts.
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