Are you looking for flexibility?
Being able to earn an income from home while still being with the kids?
Today we’re going to learn about a new way to earn money online and start working at the comfort of your home. Have you heard of a legal proofreader?
Just like the Scoping career we covered last week, proofreading court transcript is another work from home job that only a select few know about.
If you have a knack for proofreading, then this could be a great opportunity for you to pick up some extra income.
It’s exactly what the job title sounds like, you are essentially proofreading court transcripts for court reporters.
If you are naturally detail oriented, agile at catching script errors, then proofreading from home could be perfect for you.
If you can learn how to proofread legal docs then you can earn as much as $2,000 to $4,000 a month while having the freedom to work from home — or anywhere for that matter.
For full-time moms, this is a great chance to contribute to the family pocketbook without leaving home.
While proofreading court transcript mandate a certain level of natural observation to detail, it is an absolutely fun and enjoyable way to make great money for those are looking to working from home.
(Plus some of the legal cases you get to read and take on are pretty interesting.)
What is the Job of a Legal Proofreader?
First, let’s understand what constitutes a legal document. Often times, an attorney assigned to a case in court will hire a court stenographer on a steno machine to type down – very fast and all verbatim – everything that is uttered in court. What stenographers produce in the end is a legal transcript.
These transcripts can include court records, depositions, and affidavits etc. that has been transcribed into plain texts with a CAT (computer-aided software) by court reporters and Scoptists. They translate the Stenographer’s shorthand into easily understandable text.
From there, the legal proofreader is the person who is responsible for making the final check for transcripts before they go back to the attorneys.
While Scoptists translate shorthand into English, a Proofreader’s role is to spot typographical missteps and ensure that the content is free of errors.
Since legal cases can be complicated and court reporters often make a lot of mistakes during transcription, they hire well-trained proofreaders to make sure every word is accurate.
Proofreading is critically important to the outcome of each legal case.
How To Become a Legal Proofreader
You don’t need a formal education to start a job as a legal proofreader. All you need is a hawk eye for errors and an excellent mastery of the English spelling, grammar, and punctuation.
Any legal certificates and accolades which you can add in your curriculum vitae help as well. A background in law, communication, and secretarial courses are beneficial in turning up leads for beginners.
The FREE 76-minute workshop for proofreaders includes a quick look into proofreading – of all kinds – not just court transcriptions. You can get a full feel for what type of proofreading work you like to do, while increasing your skill set.
Along with this 7 day free tutorials to gain some more legal proofreading knowledge before committing yourself fully.
What Does It Take to Become a Proofreader
As for skills, you need to have more patience and rock-solid attention span. Some court transcripts are intense and are not always interesting, which can really take a toll on you. So you need to show that you’ve got what it takes to complete the project on time despite all these hurdles.
You have to reflect on your personal skills. Not everyone is cut out to be a proofreader; on a personal level, I know I can’t cut it. My grammar is atrocious and I still miss writing errors after my third proofing.
But someone who is detailed oriented like my husband would be natural proofreaders. He has strong grammar skills plus strong attention to detail. Since he’s naturally good with the tiny details, being a professional proofreader is going to be a lot more enjoyable and satisfactory work for him.
It also helps if you’ve done some General Proofreading jobs in the past of course. Although proofreading court transcripts is a little more serious and technical than ordinary proofreading, clients are easily drawn to those who have an idea of what the job is all about.
How Much Money Can You Earn from Proofreading?
Legal proofreaders typically earn 10% of the court reporter’s rate per page – that is 35 to 65 cents per double-spaced page of 25 lines. If you proofread 30 to 80 pages per hour, you can potentially earn at least $35 to $85 per hour depending on the type of transcript and how fast you can proofread.
But don’t get me wrong…Proofreading a 30-page transcript is not really that hard!
Unlike books, transcripts are double-spaced so completing one page would not even take a whole minute of your time. If you have an eagle eye for errors, this could be as easy as A-B-C!
Some newbies on the block have reportedly earned as much as $1,300 per month. If you have more time and as you develop speed, you can accept more clients and raise your potential income to at least $4,000 a month.
That is a typical full-time office worker would earn on a monthly basis while working 5 days a week and 8 hours a day.
What’s more fun in working as a legal proofreader is the chance to earn more.
Clients who are in rush are willing to charge a higher rate for a faster turnaround. At this point, you can charge a higher rate of $0.65 per page on the promise that you can beat the given deadline.
To give more solid numbers, if you are taking up proofreading as a full-time job then your earnings can be around $5,000+ every month at 40 hours a week. That would be a good $60,000 a year job.
But the flexibility of legal proofreader jobs is how you can go part-time (around 20 hours for $2,000) if you can find clients.
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How To Find Clients as a Legal Proofreader
If you want to get a job as a legal proofreader, you need to build a CV and market yourself as someone who knows how to proofread court transcripts.
If you’re new to the field, it’s okay to list all your ordinary proofreading experience including the job you’ve done for a blog, website, or author.
Join the Proofread Anywhere community through their course, it’s one of the best ways to get the connections you need.
Then mention some educational background and skillset that are relevant to legal proofreading. After getting your CV done, you can start searching for legal proofreading jobs online and submit your CV.
Another way to get a job as a legal proofreader is to register in online job platforms, build a profile, and start applying for jobs. Looking for new clients can be daunting at first. The key is to stay motivated and up-to-date with the latest job postings and soon you’ll find your way in.
Also, don’t forget the power of social media in spreading a word about you.
Build your profile in LinkedIn and connect with court reporters. Edit your Instagram bio and link it to your CV.
And join Facebook groups where you can connect with other legal proofreaders.
Oftentimes, these groups would have members who can refer clients in need of legal proofreaders. You can take this as an opportunity to introduce yourself and inform them of your interest to proofread court transcript.
Tracking Work Hours
The Proofread Anywhere course will cover billing and tracking of work hours but generally – it is simply done on a spreadsheet. You track the date, job number, page number, page rate, and total work done.
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Pros Legal Proofreader Jobs
The best thing about proofreading court transcript is that it is very flexible and much more self-directed than an office job. In fact, it is very economical considering that you don’t have to spend for gas in driving to and from work.
You really can proofread from anywhere and in any way. You can do it from a computer, printing it out as a hard copy, or simply doing it on an iPad or tablet from home or anywhere!
Normally, you will just need a working email and iPad and work anywhere. So long as there’s an internet connection, then you’re totally good!
As you gain more experience in proofreading court transcript, you can venture in new business and build your own proofing agency! Just imagine having your own crew of legal proofreaders – that means starting a business, opening new doors, working fewer hours etc.
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The one con of this job is probably the fact that you’re going to be isolated.
We all know that working from home is fun and convenient, but it can also get lonely. And naturally, not all transcripts are as interesting as you expect them to be.
In case you ever feel that pang of loneliness, you can add some chatter by turning up your favorite music. You can even host a tea gathering with other work-from-home friends over the weekend just to lift your spirit up.
Many challenges can come in your ways such as time conflict, difficult deadlines, and a demanding client.
Sometimes, you may need to juggle workloads while trying hard to balance your time as a full-time parent.
The key is to have solid time management skills. As you develop the ability to meet high volume demands, you can slowly modify your rate and accept bigger proofreading projects.
There is no guaranteed equality in proofreading. Some people can hit the nail on the head and start making good money right away.
Errors in transcription immediately register with some people faster than others. A lot of success is dependent on how hard you are willing to work, conform with the client, and simply performance — how quickly you can churn out quality work showing off your natural talents.
It doesn’t hurt to give it a try and see if it’s a personal fit.
Check out these FREE resources atProofreadAnywhere.com and sign up for a 76-minute training session. Don’t forget another freebie: Caitlyn’s 7 day free tutorials to gain more legal proofreading insight.
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