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Cutting Outside Counsel Litigation Spend: Insourcing v. Outsourcing "aka" the Magic Behind E-Discovery Right-Sourcing

Most in-house counsel agree that reducing overall outside counsel spend, particularly when it comes to litigation spend, is a laudable goal. While the underlying needs and high-stakes antes of this objective have admittedly increased following the Global Financial Crisis of 2007-2008 and subsequent recession, foreclosures, and rarely seen historically high unemployment figures only recently finding relief, the need to reduce outside counsel litigation spend has always been present according to most, and, as such, is rather old news.   

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Legal Alert: NLRB Holds Employees May Use Employer Email Systems for Non-Work-Related Communications

In a reversal of precedent, a divided National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) held yesterday that employees have a right to use their employers’ email systems for non-business purposes, including statutorily protected communications regarding the terms and conditions of their employment and regarding union organizing efforts. See Purple Communications, Inc., 361 NLRB No. 126 (December 11, 2014).  The NLRB’s ruling stemmed from a case brought by the Communications Workers of America union after it unsuccessfully attempted to organize employees of Purple Communications, Inc., a company that provides interpreting services for the deaf and hearing-impaired.  The union argued that prohibiting the company’s workers from using the company’s email system for non-business purposes and on behalf of organizations not associated with the company interfered with the CWA’s organizing efforts. 

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FURTHER REVISED RULE 37(e) PASSES STANDING RULES SUB-COMMITTEE – NEXT STOP, GENERAL DEBATE

"Let us go on perfecting the Constitution by adding, by way of amendment, those forms which time and trial show are still wanting." --Thomas Jefferson Letters; Letter to Wilson Nicholas, 1803.

Following a series of final revisions to the highly controversial proposed re-draft of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e), and after significant discussions and debate, the Standing Committee of the Federal Rules and Practice Procedure finally approved a revised rule on May 29, 2014. True to form, the most recent version of the rule as adopted by the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules on April 10 – 11, 2014 did manage to pass, but once again only after significant discussion and debate among the Rules Committee members.  While the Sub-Committee has yet to review two memoranda proposing changes to the Committee Notes for Rule 37(e), the revised rule now moves forward to be heard for general debate and comment by the larger Rules Committee. 

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BYOD [Bring Your Own Device] to Work Concerns

Introduction: Two Major Concerns

Being a seasoned litigation paralegal with approximately 27 years of experience, I foresee quite a few concerns with the concept of BYOD in the corporate and legal industry. As it seems to happen more times then I care to remember, technology is ahead of the curve and the solutions to “rein in” technology are lagging behind. Many of you may be too young to remember when the first sophisticated color copiers came out and there was a problem with checks being copied and pawned off as real. It only took the paper, ink and check manufacturing industries a few months to come up with the technology to work with the copier technology and develop the “copy” solution for checks. Once again there is a scramble to try to meet the solutions to the BYOD dilemma facing many industries today. 

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Moving TARget: The Hunt for a More Cost Effective and Efficient Review

Emerging from the haze of methodologies is a concept called Technology Assisted Review (TAR).  It’s referred to by many names, but the concept is the same: Use analytics in conjunction with human oversight to increase the accuracy and reduce the costs generally associated with the attorney review phase of e-discovery.   

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E-Discovery Vendor or Partner: It’s All in the Name

A quick glance at  Dictionary.com reveals the following definitions for the word ‘vendor’ vs. the word ‘partner’:

vendor:
-noun
1.        a person or agency that sells.

partner:
-noun
1.        a person who shares or is associated with another in some action or endeavor; sharer; associate.

How do you and your organization view your relationship with your external e-discovery service provider(s), as those of a vendor, or those of a partner?  Frequently razzed about my overt avoidance of the word ‘vendor’ when seeking e-discovery RFP project consultations and bids at the onset of a new litigation matter, the word ‘vendor’ still never fails to leave a sour taste in my mouth. 

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Be Careful What You Post: Social Networks Are Discoverable

As two recent cases have made it abundantly clear, one must be very careful what is posted on your social networking cites.  I was fascinated by the discussion in the blog on Forbes website entitled: Do Your Social Networking Privacy Settings Matter If You Get Sued? by Kashmir Hill.

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Retrieving Discoverable E-Discovery Data from Social Media Sites: Or, "Wow, is this what I asked for?!"

A great deal of attention has been properly paid to the inherent data privacy and compliance issues surrounding critical e-discovery data stored on social media sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.  Moreover, when this same data is stored in the Cloud, these issues become further complicated.

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Oh the stories a copier can tell!

It seems that most every copy machine manufactured since 2002 contains and uses hard disk drives.  Better yet, most all of these copiers are now digital MFPs (MultiFunction Products) that scan, email, fax ,and copy.  As you’ll see in the CBS report, the device has to store a copy of the document being printed or imaged on that hard drive in order to do its work.  Worse, those images can be retrieved, in many cases, just as files on a computer hard drive can be retrieved. 

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Does Your Law Firm Follow ESI Best Practices

Over the years the overwhelming volume of electronically stored information (ESI) continues to grow. 

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