Ordering Copies of Electronic Recorded Hearings and Transcripts of Proceedings

​Thurston County Official Court Reporters provide the official transcripts of electronically recorded hearings from the Thurston County Family, Superior and District Courts. All proceedings, with the exception of some ex parte calendars, are reported by an Official Court Reporter (OCR) or electronically recorded (ER). If a person needs a transcript of an electronically recorded court case, it must be prepared by an Official Court Reporter who will use the audio recording to prepare the transcript. If an Official Court Reporter was present at the hearing, that individual would prepare the transcript and should be contacted directly.

If an Official Court Reporter reported the hearing you are requesting, you may find their contact information Official Court Reporter Brochure.
To obtain a transcript of an electronically recorded proceeding, please send an email here.

Ordering Transcripts of Recorded Proceedings

​To order a transcript of an electronically recorded proceeding, you will need the following information:

  1. Indicate whether the matter is from Family Court, Superior Court or District Court
  2. The name of the case and cause number
  3. The type of hearing to be prepared (for example, hearing on a motion, trial proceedings, sentencing, plea, or arraignment)
  4. The names of any attorney(s) present
  5. The date of the hearing
  6. The correct contact information where the transcript will be sent

The Clerk’s Office can assist you in obtaining the above information using the public search for hearings and cases at the following link:

https://odysseyportal.courts.wa.gov/odyportal

After submitting your request, you will receive a response from an Official Court Reporter containing the estimated cost as well as an estimated completion date. Only cash, money orders, and bank certified checks are accepted as payment.

Please note that no work will begin on a transcript until payment for the transcript is made.

Obtaining a Copy of an Electronically Recorded Hearing

​CDs of hearings that have been electronically recorded may be obtained from Court Administration.

To obtain a CD from a hearing that was electronically recorded at Family & Juvenile Court you must:

  1. First verify that the hearing you are requesting was electronically recorded.
    You can do this by checking the minutes on Odyssey Portal which are typically labeled "Motion Hearing".
     
  2. Complete this form and file it with the Clerk's Office and pay the fee ($25 per CD).

Court Administration will contact you once the CD is ready for you to pick up.  If you would like us to mail you the CD, you must provide a self-addressed, stamped envelope.  Note, we are not responsible for any damages that could occur to the CD once mailed.  For any questions, please call (360) 709-3295 or email here.

To obtain a CD from a hearing that was electronically recorded at Main Campus please send an email to the link below and include the following information:

  1. Proof you have paid the Clerk for a CD;
  2. Case Number,
  3. Case Name,
  4. Hearing Date,
  5. Your contact information, including name, phone number and address.

​Once you have your case information, you may submit a request via email here.

Ordering a Transcript from a Court Hearing or Trial

Contact the Court Reporter directly via email with the case information regarding your request.

Click here for the brochure and individual court reporter information.

Frequently Asked Questions
What is a court transcript and how is it used?

​A court transcript is a written verbatim record of what was said in a court hearing that is transcribed by an Official Court Reporter from an electronic recording or from their stenographic notes. It is most often used by parties seeking review by another court.

What information is required to order a transcript?
  1. Indicate if it is a Family Court, Superior Court or District Court matter
  2. The name of the case and cause number
  3. The type of hearing requested to be prepared (for example, hearing on a motion, trial proceedings, sentencing, plea, arraignment, or motion to suppress)
  4. The names of any attorney(s) present
  5. The date of the hearing
  6. Your correct contact information
  7. Determine whether the hearing was electronically recorded or reported by an Official Court Reporter
What happens after I have emailed my transcript request?

​You will receive a response from an Official Court Reporter within two working days and be notified by email of the cost of the transcript and the expected date you should expect to receive it.

Do I need to send money with my transcript order?

​Payment arrangements will be made with the Court Reporter.  

Why am I charged for the original court transcript but I only receive a copy?

​The original transcript is retained by the Court Reporter and filed in the event of an appeal to a higher court. Therefore, no person is ever provided with an original transcript.

What forms of payment do you accept?

​Court Reporters will let you know which form of payment they accept. At this time, the Thurston County Official Court Reporters accept cash, money orders, or bank certified checks.

Can I get an audio recording of my hearing instead of a transcript?

If a hearing was electronically recorded, you may obtain a CD, please review the top of this page under Obtaining a Copy of an Electronically Recorded Hearing for more information.

If a hearing was reported by an Official Court Reporter, no audio recording is available.

Please note that an individual may not submit an audio recording in place of an official paper transcript per the Rules of Civil Procedure. Unless a judge orders it or the court rules allow a different process, a paper transcript from any electronically recorded hearing must be ordered, paid for, and transcribed by an Official Court Reporter.

How long does it take to get a transcript?

​If your transcript request is not for an appeal, it is completed on a first-paid first-served basis within a reasonable amount of time. In general, you should expect that your transcript will be produced within 10 business days.

Expedited transcription services may be available for an additional fee.

What if I need a transcript but can’t afford it?

​To apply for a transcript to be paid at County expense, you can make a motion to the court.

What happens to my transcript request if I do not pay the deposit to the Court Reporter on time?

​No transcript will be prepared without first receiving the deposit. If your transcript is for an appeal, the Court of Appeals will be notified that no payment has been received.

I want to get a copy of a transcript that has already been transcribed. How do I do that?

​Contact the Court Reporter listed on the transcript to obtain a copy.

Can I get a transcript of just a ruling of a judge or court commissioner from a hearing?

​Yes. In your request, simply indicate that you want to order only the ruling of the judge or commissioner. You will only be charged for the portion of the transcript that you requested.

I have received my transcript, but it contains “inaudibles.”  What does that mean?

​Transcribing from audio-recorded proceedings can be extremely difficult. An “(inaudible)” notation may occur for any of the following reasons:

  1. Soft-spoken speakers
  2. Multiple parties speaking at the same time
  3. Quoted materials that are read quickly
  4. Non-verbal interference, such as coughing, sneezing, bumping the microphone, doors closing loudly, or cell phone interruptions
  5. Poor sound quality on the recording
Why do I sometimes see the notation “(Phonetic)” in the transcript?

​The notation “(Phonetic)” is used when the Court Reporter is unable to confirm the spelling of a proper name. Though every effort is made to confirm all spellings in a given transcript, it is not always possible to confirm each and every one.

My transcript contains a Title page, Appearance page, a Witness/Exhibit page, and a Certification page. Do these count as a full page of my transcript?

​Yes. These are all required to be included in the transcript.

Tips For Participating In an Electronically Recorded Courtroom

Court Proceedings in Thurston County’s courtrooms are sometimes recorded using a digital or analog recording system, which may be on at all times. This technology creates a verbatim record without the use of a Court Reporter. The following practice tips are intended to help you make a clear recording of your proceeding, which is vital to the parties and judges if there are subsequent proceedings.

  • Upon speaking for the first time, identify yourself for the record. Spell your name and state whom you represent. This is important even if the other people in the courtroom know who you are. The person transcribing the recording may not be familiar with particular attorneys or parties.
  • Give the clerk the correct spellings of unusual or technical names and vocabulary or words used by you or your witnesses that are frequently misunderstood, when known.
  • Speak clearly and audibly.
  • Only one person should speak at a time. Avoid making noises when people are talking. Even things such as coin jingling and paper riffling can be picked up and will cover up voices. Be sure that your cell phone or PDA is off in the courtroom.
  • Avoid talking when there is noise. Wait until the courtroom is quiet to begin speaking.
  • The recording system can only pick up verbally spoken words. Avoid “uh huh” and non-verbal gestures. Be sure that verbal responses are elicited from all witnesses.
  • When reading from a document, read slowly and clearly.
  • Avoid making any statements you do not want recorded.
  • Remain within arm's reach of a microphone at all times when speaking.
  • Avoid tapping on or striking the table or microphone.
     

​If you are looking for Court Records, those are maintained and held by the Clerk’s Office and can be ordered here.

If you are trying to request Administrative Records please review the following information.