Is E-Discovery overwhelming the American Justice System?

Interesting article in the most recent Economist that asserts “A deluge of electronic information may overwhelm American civil justice”

The article’s author points out that it was not long ago when “In the rare event that electronic evidence was requested, 100 gigabytes (GB) was considered a large amount.” Today, “almost every case involves e-discovery and spits out “terabytes” of information–the equivalent of millions of pages.”

In an ordinary case, 200 lawyers can easily review electronic documents for four months, at a cost of millions of dollars, he says.

Not surprisingly, given the huge costs associated with these cases, many large corporations are trying to bring e-discovery in house and are building their own teams. Verizon is one company taking this step – and they project that they will save well over $11M per year once their team and technology is firmly in place.

Whether or not this prediction comes true, this does seem to be a trend among companies. And until limits are placed on the amount (and type) of information that can be requested during discovery, it seems this will only continue to grow.

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