In our first two articles, we discussed the benefits of records management and methods for identifying and preserving ESI (our third article covered hot topics and recurring issues in recent e-discovery case law). Now it’s time to start collecting that information to review and, ultimately, to produce.
The collection process should be comprehensive without being over-inclusive. It should preserve the integrity of the data, the chain of custody and authenticity of the documents, and should be cost- and time-efficient and not disrupt the organization’s business operations.
After determining the collection method, outside and in-house counsel must make a series of decisions regarding what types of data will be collected. It is best for the parties to agree on these issues in order to streamline the collection process and minimize discovery costs by reducing both the volume of ESI to be collected and the number of disputes. Ideally, consensus (which should be reduced to writing) should be reached on the following issues: