eDiscovery Daily Blog

Why Does Production Have to be Such a Big Production?, Part Four

Editor’s Note: Tom O’Connor is a nationally known consultant, speaker, and writer in the field of computerized litigation support systems.  He has also been a great addition to our webinar program, participating with me on several recent webinars.  Tom has also written several terrific informational overview series for CloudNine, including his most recent one, Understanding Blockchain and its Impact on Legal Technology, which we covered as part of a webcast on March 27.  Now, Tom has written another terrific overview regarding production challenges and what to do about them titled Why Does Production Have to be Such a Big Production? that we’re happy to share on the eDiscovery Daily blog.  Enjoy! – Doug

Tom’s overview is split into four parts, so we’ll cover each part separately.  Part one was last Monday, part two was last Wednesday and part three was last Friday, here’s the fourth and final part.

Recommendations for Minimizing Production Mistakes

Shawn Huston says,

The most beneficial step that any attorney can take is to talk through the production protocol and specifications prior to even collecting any data. Discuss the pros and cons of the proposed production format and what processing steps will be required to meet the protocol.

This should also include the cost of performing the tasks so there are no surprises to the client’s budget. The benefit to having the discussion prior to the time the production is due is that there may be steps that are necessary early on in the process to adequately provide the requested format, or ways to reduce cost.

Finally, the time it takes to set-up, convert to the appropriate format and export the final deliverable is vastly underestimated. The timing should be discussed with your litigation support team, whether in-house or at a service provider, so realistic expectations can be set and proper time set aside for quality control steps.

I like to start by asking did your production problem begin at the processing stage, which makes it a machine generated issue or did it happen post-processing, which is more often a human failing.

Virtually every tech expert I spoke with said redaction should be done by a tool that allows users to burn a permanent black box into an image or text.  Unless you’re redacting paper, then they recommend a good pair of scissors.

My last tip? Get documents produced in native format and forget all about load files.

No, wait, one last tip.  Get a Rule 502(d) Order. It protects against careless or otherwise inadvertent disclosure. As Judge Peck (I know, he’s off the bench now but he’ll always be a judge to me… it’s a New England upbringing thing) once said “in my mind, there is no downside to having such an order” and it may even be malpractice not to get one.

So, what do you think?  Have you experienced problems with document productions in eDiscovery?  As always, please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

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