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Use and Abuse of Attorney-Client Privilege and Work Product Doctrine in E-Discovery

Two  federal courts recently dealt with thorny issues stemming from defendant employers’ use of the attorney-client privilege and work product doctrine. These rulings should be heeded by those of us who develop or revise electronic data review protocols, particularly any  guidance for determining when to withhold documents under the attorney-client privilege or the work product doctrine.

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Facebook Makes Discovery Easy (Sometimes)

As most any litigation practitioner knows, Facebook can be GOLD.  Pictures really are worth 1,000 words. . . or more.  That million dollar picture of a plaintiff who has claimed debilitating emotional distress:  on a boat, raising a beer with friends, and posted smack in the middle of the period of time that plaintiff claims was riddled with “emotional distress.”  GOLD.  And it happens with regularity.  Facebook, as with other social media, is a medium of the moment – individuals post (and get tagged) in pictures posted during the adrenaline-infused, alcohol-fogged moments of “good times.”  And it is exactly these moments – moments easily forgotten by Plaintiffs asking a judge or jury for emotional distress damages – that are crucial to developing a clear picture of emotional distress. 

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