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How to Create an Effective Guidance Document for eDiscovery

posted 3 years ago

Efficient document review is essential for the success of any litigant, and preparing a clear and concise guidance document for your eDiscovery team is necessary to promote and support the team’s productivity and effectiveness. A thoughtful guidance document can help your team to avoid costly and critical errors and can facilitate the efficient and effective evaluation of critical and material information. Below are some of the best practices for developing your guidance document. 

Summary of the Matter 

Providing your eDiscovery team with a summary of the legal matter is required for effective document review. Your team needs to have a fundamental understanding of the case so that they can know what they are looking for within documents to promote the legal team’s case strategy and do so efficiently. 

Discovery Requests 

Your eDiscovery team should have access to any discovery requests from the other party, such as subpoenas, notices for discovery and inspection, bills of particulars, and even the complaint. These are key documents that will let your support team know exactly what they are looking for and within what context. 

Responsiveness and Issue Coding Specifications 

A guidance document should also include an overview of responsiveness categories and document coding options. These are organizational tools that will ensure cohesiveness and consistency during the review process. Also, consider including an explanation as to why the issue codes are relevant to the case; this can reduce inconsistent document coding and streamline the quality control process. 

Privileged Documents 

The litigation support team should also receive information to help them identify privileged communications or materials to be redacted or withheld in the discovery process. This may include the names of members of the legal department or the names of outside law firms that have provided counsel in the past. 

Expectations 

Any guidance document should also include  the client’s expectations in terms of deliverables and deadlines. This will keep the team on schedule and ensure that discovery is completed within the required time frame. 

Baer Reed provides a full range of legal support services to law firms and corporate legal departments around the world, including litigation support services. To learn more, call us at 888-433-1990, or contact us online today.

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