Twelve Best Practices for Better eDiscovery From Craig Ball: eDiscovery Best Practices

I considered calling this a “twelve step program” for better eDiscovery but thought better of it.  😉  Regardless, Craig Ball starts out 2022 on his excellent Ball in Your Court blog with twelve best practices to better eDiscovery that all lawyers – even the highly successful ones – should follow. And here’s info about an excellent legal tech ethics webinar next week!

In Craig’s post (A Dozen Nips and Tucks for E-Discovery), he discusses how he contributes annually to an eDiscovery Update presentation for top tier trial lawyers and that he struggles annually to offer a handout that will be short enough for attendees to read and sufficiently pointed to prompt action. As he notes:

“Ironically, predictably, the more successful the lawyers in attendance, the less moved they are to seek fresh approaches to discovery. Yet, we would be wise to observe that success tends not to depart abruptly but slips away on little cat feet, or as Hemingway described the velocity of a character’s path to bankruptcy, “Gradually, then suddenly.” A few nips and tucks may be all that’s needed to stay in fighting form.”

Here are three examples of his list of twelve best practices for better eDiscovery:

Forms from a decade ago are obsolete.  Update your preservation letters and legal hold notices.  Remember: preservation letters go to the other side; legal hold notices to your clients.

Be sure your legal hold process incorporates all elements of a defensible notification:

  • Notice is Timely
  • Communicated through an effective channel
  • Issued by person(s) with clout
  • Sent to all necessary custodians
  • Communicates gravity and accountability
  • Supplies context re: claim or litigation
  • Offers clear, practical guidance re: actions and deadlines
  • Sensibly scopes sources and forms
  • Identifies mechanism and contact for questions
  • Incorporates acknowledgement, follow up and refresh

There are no more free passes for ignorance.  Now, learn it, get help or get out.

You can read all twelve best practices in Craig’s post here. Of course, the first step for an attorney to better eDiscovery practices is to recognize they have a problem with eDiscovery practices! 😉

Speaking of Craig, as evidenced by the graphic above, he will be presenting in a CLE accredited webinar conducted by the Women in eDiscovery (WiE) San Diego Chapter with the amazing Sheila Grela on Practical Legal Tech Ethics on Wednesday, January 12 at noon PT! Resources, checklists and examples will be provided. Click here to register. California MCLE provided by San Diego Paralegal Association.

So, what do you think of Craig’s list of twelve best practices?  Would you add any?  Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

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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