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One who prepares a summary or gives an account. A court reporter is a person who records court proceedings as they take place and then later transcribes the account. A published volume of the decisions of a court or a group of courts.

The National Reporter System, published by Thomson West, is the most comprehensive collection of the decisions of the appellate courts of the states and of the United States. There are 18 reporters in the National Reporter System. Eight of the units cover federal courts and ten units cover the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

All decisions, opinions, and memoranda of the U.S. Supreme Court are published in the Supreme Court Reporter (cited as S. Ct.). The Advance Sheets are issued semimonthly during the term of the Court. At the end of the term, two or three hardbound volumes are published, depending on the number of cases decided.

The Federal Reporter (F.), Federal Reporter, Second Series (F. 2d), and Federal Reporter, Third Series (F.3d) contain the reported cases of the U.S. Courts of Appeal, Court of Claims, Court of Customs and Patent Appeals, and Temporary Emergency Court of Appeals. The Federal Supplement (F.Supp.) reports decisions of the U.S. District Courts, the U.S. Court of International Trade, and the Judicial Panel on Multi-state Litigation. Federal Rules Decisions (F.R.D.) contains district court opinions construing the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Military Justice Reporter (M.J.) carries the cases of the Court of Military Appeals and Courts of Military Review. Bankruptcy Reporter (Bankr.) reports decisions of the U.S. Bankruptcy Courts and bankruptcy decisions of other federal courts.

The regional units of the National Reporter System report the opinions of the highest courts of all 50 states and the District of Columbia. In addition, these reports contain opinions of state intermediate appellate courts that are selected by the courts for publication. Many of the states have designated the unit of the National Reporter System in which their cases appear as their official reports.

The regional units of this system are the Atlantic Reporter, Second Series (A., A. 2d); North Western Reporter, Second Series (N.W., N.W. 2d); Pacific Reporter, Second Series (P., P. 2d); South Eastern Reporter, Second Series (S.E., S.E. 2d); Southern Reporter, Second Series (So., So. 2d); and South Western Reporter, Second Series (S.W., S.W. 2d). Because of the large volume of reported cases, three states have their own reporter units. They are the California Reporter (Cal. Rptr.); Illinois Decisions (Ill. Dec.); and New York Supplement and New York Supplement, Second Series (N.Y.S., N.Y.S. 2d).

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

REPORTER. A person employed in making out and publishing the history of cases decided by the court.
     2. The act of congress of August 26, 1842, sect., 2, enacts, that in the supreme court of the United States, one reporter shall be appointed by the court with the salary of twelve hundred and fifty dollars; provided that he deliver to the secretary of state for distribution, one hundred and fifty copies of each volume of reports that he shall hereafter prepare and publish, immediately after the publication thereof, which publication shall be made annually within four months after the adjournment of the court at which the decisions are made.
     3. In some of the states the reporters are appointed by authority of law; in others, they are volunteers.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
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