NATIONAL COURT REPORTERS ASSOCIATION | WHY WE HAVE ETHICS FIRST?
Are you a member of the National Court Reporters Association? NCRA’s program “Ethics First” is a no-cost program that, in part, works to remind our clients why the impartiality and neutrality of the court reporter is of the utmost importance in maintaining an unbiased legal system. As a member, you stand out as the reporter who is right for the client.
NCRA adopted as part of its Code of Professional Ethics (COPE) a policy that prohibits giving excessive gifts to anyone associated with the litigation. The Board of Directors, in 2008, asked the Committee on Professional Ethics to review the policy. As a result of that process, the association’s policy was reaffirmed, and a COPE advisory opinion was issued.
In 2011, at COPE’s recommendation, the policy on gift giving had been revised again. Currently, COPE is working on another Public Advisory Opinion to assist members in complying with the new policy.
In addition, the Ethics First program works to encourage court reporters, firms and their clients they serve to promote the impartiality and the neutrality of the court reporting profession and avoid inappropriate gift giving and gift acceptance. When used correctly, the Ethics First trademark is designed to instill public confidence in and support for the court reporting profession.
As a participant, you will be able to use the Ethics First logo as proof of your adherence to the ethics necessary for our profession. Your name is also included in a listing of Ethics First participants on NCRA’s website. Your participation will be highlighted in the Professional Services Locator (PSL) listings.
So how do you become a member of Ethics First? As a member of NCRA, you can click on http://www.ncra.org/Membership/content.cfm?ItemNumber=11519&navItemNumber=11518 to sign up for Ethics First. Your name will then be added to the directory, and you will be able to start using the logo on business cards and in other advertising.
By signing up and promoting this division of NCRA you can help remind the legal community why the impartiality of court reporters is so important.
Submitted by Jessica Waack
Registered Diplomate Reporter
Certified Realtime Reporter
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