Some eDiscovery trends so far in 2011

Electronic Discovery, or eDiscovery, is continuing its rapid growth in the world of civil litigation. There is hardly a practicing attorney today who doesn’t turn to the internet and other digital technologies to gather information about their cases. With eDiscovery being used so commonly, there are many trends prevalent so far this year. Here is an overview of six of them.

Project Management

A case is not a project most attorneys can easily manage. It is a misinterpretation made by many lawyers as they tend to muddle up the workflow process by trying to handle the project management themselves. Cases have to be handled by the lawyers but the project management has to be left to the experts, such as trained and certified professionals who are adept at doing it. Outsourcing project management is certainly an ongoing trend in the field.

Cloud” Technologies

The “cloud” refers to the data storage software which is used by law firms and lawyers to upload and archive information they have access to in the future. Concerns surrounding cloud technologies include reliability, data protection and preventing unauthorized access. Until there is absolute certainty that the cloud is safe and secure, law professionals are going to be hesitant to use it. However, many of these issues are being rapidly addressed as there are so many benefits associated with cloud computing. The prediction here is we’ll only see more of it in the future.

Social Media

Social media has become a headache for many law firms and departments as employees cannot be totally prevented from posting controversial views (or photos) on Facebook or Twitter. This means that the firm has to keep an eye on the actions of its employees on the social media websites to avoid legal sanctions. Developing and implementing a strong social media policy is highly recommended.

Interdisciplinary Teams

Instead of using a separate legal and IT team for its work, law firms are beginning to have teams that incorporate experts from both fields. This means that there is a better workflow process in place and fewer problems for smooth operation.

Interoperatibility

Sharing and shifting data between various levels of the eDiscovery is a risky process which could lead to data loss as well as other issues. Interoperatibility between the levels ensures that this problem does not occur and this is why many law firms are integrating it into their eDiscovery usage, making it a linear process.

Outsourcing eDiscovery

The root problem is that many firms are apprehensive about investing in an in-house eDiscovery system for themselves. It depends on the level of usage that the law firm has for eDiscovery which determines whether they should outsource it or have it in-house, but more and more firms are now opting to partner with firms such as TERIS, who specialize in eDiscovery.

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