e-discovery Rules Reshaping Legal Industry

e-discovery Rules Reshaping Legal Industry


In case you missed the announcement that amended (and retroactive) e-discovery rules went into effect in December (or you failed to pick up on their importance), now’s the time to acquaint yourself with the changes. Your knowledge of the new rules may help prevent Attorney Professional Liability claims against your firm. Read on to learn a bit about how e-discovery rules reshaping legal industry.

Electronically Stored Information (ESI) Targeted

One of the most compelling aspects of the amended rules is that they make it easier, quicker, and more affordable for plaintiffs to bring civil litigation cases to court. The amendments call for shortened deadlines and require defendant’s and plaintiff’s counsel to work together to quickly resolve cases in which ESI goes missing. In short, the amendments prevent an attorney from replying to a document request with a list of objections. Assuming the request relates to relevant documents with a sincere bearing on the case, attorneys must comply.

Document Preservation Also Gets New Attention

The amended rules also require that document preservation be discussed with a judge during the case management conference under Rule 16 and discovery under Rule 26 (f). The deadlines for both conferences have been shortened. The goal of this change is clear, says Karin Jenson, who co-chaired the 2016 Sedona Conference Institute. Clients will avoid unanticipated last-minute demands for data or questions about what data they should have preserved. The benefit of time will be on their side.

Contrary to popular belief, e-discovery issues aren’t always quickly and easily resolved. As social media, the cloud, and the Internet of Things become more pervasive, so too will attorneys’ need for e-discovery expertise.

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