Depending on your firm’s size, it may make sense to invest in video equipment and hire a full time videographer to handle your legal video depositions. On the other hand, even the largest of firms find that using legal video services allows them to focus on what they do best without worrying about video equipment and hiring additional staff. Whether you hire a full time legal videographer or use a legal video services provider, both have their pros and cons.

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Full Time Legal Video Staff Member

Having a full time videographer on staff ensures that someone is available to videotape your deposition – unless she is busy videotaping one of your partners’ depositions. Having a videographer on staff also ensures consistency. For example, your videographer will understand all of your firm’s requirements and video format preferences. Plus, when the legal video work is performed in-house, you less time is spent waiting for copies to be delivered to your office. In addition, if you need a tape containing excerpts from previously recorded depositions, your videographer will most likely be able to edit the deposition for you in a timely manner.

However, having another person on the staff means that you will be paying a salary regardless of whether your firm has any depositions scheduled. In addition to the salary costs, your firm will also be responsible for taxes, health insurance, and other costs associated with human resources. In addition to the cost of the legal videographer, you’ll also need to invest in video equipment including video and audio recording equipment as well as video capture and editing equipment.

In order to get the most out of your legal video investment, your attorneys will need to coordinate the scheduling of depositions. After all, if you only have one videographer and one video camera, if two depositions are scheduled for the same time, one of the attorneys will need to hire an outside legal video services provider.

Pros and Cons of Using Legal Video Services

Teaming up with a legal video services provider is ideal for most firms as most won’t have enough depositions to justify hiring a full time videographer. Legal video services providers have the equipment, staff, and know-how to provide you with timely services, even if you have several depositions taking place at once. In addition to providing your firm with video services, many companies specializing in legal video also offer court reporting services and real time reporting.

Obviously, you won’t incur any equipment costs with an external firm handling your videography needs. You also will only pay for the services that you need, as you use them. With a full time staff member, you pay whether or not the videographer is actively filming or editing.

If you’re considering doing your video in-house, do the math and come up with an annual cost for video equipment, recruitment, and salary expenses. Now, estimate the number of hours you’ll need video services for the entire year. Divide your total investment by the hours needed and you’ll come up with an hourly cost for in-house videography. Compare that hourly cost to the hourly cost of your current video services provider and you’ll likely find that it makes sense to continue outsourcing.