ESI Protocols Are the Best Way to Eliminate Disputes in Discovery: eDiscovery Best Practices

This week’s blog post for IPRO’s blog is about the best way to eliminate disputes in discovery – ESI protocols!  If you know your Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP), you know that Rule 26(f) dictates a “conference of the parties” (also known as the “meet and confer”), and that’s where the ESI protocol comes in – it is the document that formalizes how issues related to ESI will be handled in your case.

I’ve helped many clients draft their ESI protocols or provided a technical review of the protocols they drafted.  Of course, opposing counsel often propose their own ESI protocol, so the earlier you can propose yours to them, the earlier you can identify areas of difference and (hopefully) negotiate an approach that both sides accept.  The result (whether agreed upon or Court ordered) is an ESI protocol that establishes the expectations for handling discovery of ESI among all parties and the Court.  It’s literally your “blueprint” for discovery.

So, what should ESI protocols contain?  What are three best practices for preparing an ESI protocol?  And why is the (old school) EDRM model backwards in the graphic?!?  You can find out on Ipro’s blog here. 😉  It’s just one more click!


Speaking of preventing discovery disputes and the use of ESI protocols, IPRO is conducting a CLE session at the April 13 Legalweek event titled An Insider’s Guide to Preventing Discovery Disputes.

Join Patricia LeBel-Lasse and Kristen Perkins from Pullman & Comley LLC, Legal Technology Writer Jim Gill, and Andie Peterson from IPRO Tuesday at 12:45 PM ET as they discuss why your team should create ESI protocols, some of the common pitfalls that occur around this process and how to prevent common discovery disputes stemming from electronic data.

You can register for the entire event here. If you attended any of the Legalweek events this year, you’re already registered!

So, what do you think?  Have you ever prepared or assisted with preparation of an ESI protocol before?  It’s one of the best exercises there is for planning discovery for your case, if not THE best!  Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.


Disclosure: Ipro is an Educational Partner and sponsor of eDiscovery Today

Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by my employer, my partners or my clients. eDiscovery Today is made available solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscovery Today should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.

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