Great advice thank you for sharing this with me.Don't the courts have control of the trial recordings? There's probably an administrative fee to obtain them, but shouldn't be too expensive.
I don't know enough about Fair Share laws to give any opinion there; that's why you would need a production partner, to help you navigate the ins and outs of doing things correctly.
There are lots of ways to keep your costs down. It could possibly be less expensive to interview your interviewees in their homes; probably a lot more comfortable for them as well. You don't have to transport the interviewees. You won't have to rent an interview space. You could get your B-roll, plus "human interest" footage of the interviewees. Either way, your production crew will cost the same. The interview from LA could be done over Skype, Zoom or a similar app; we see that on news programs all the time, especially now during Covid lockdowns.
The key to a successful project is massive, detailed preproduction. You are a general planning a campaign. Where are you going, how do you get there, what logistical support do your troops need? "Nobody plans to fail; they fail to plan."
That's why you need a production partner to help you navigate; you are a stranger in a strange land and need a "native guide" to lead you through the production jungle. Otherwise you could be wasting a lot of time and money.