The use of electronic discovery software in litigation with large volumes of data has become standard practice. The software allows the user to leverage analytics to better understand the data and to streamline the document review process. While we routinely use e-discovery software for our class action cases, the software is also useful for smaller cases. Efficiencies can be gained in almost all cases that have a collection of documents.
The time a lawyer spends reviewing documents is an expensive part of the litigation process. Leveraging the software’s analytics tools reduces the number of documents to be reviewed by the legal team. This translates into a costs savings for the client and helps move the case to resolution sooner.
Analytics tools such as email threading and de-duplication can be run successfully on most smaller datasets. De-duplication identifies documents that are true duplicates so that only one copy of the document is being set aside for review. It also groups together documents that are similar but not true duplicates and highlights the differences for a quick comparison. E-mail threading groups email conversations together and identifies the most complete message thread so that a legal team only needs to review one complete thread rather than each individual email or partial thread separately. The tool also helps identify when a document is missing from the chain.
As an example, we recently received a dataset of close to 35,000 documents, comprised mostly of emails and attachments. Using our Relativity software, we eliminated junk files, ran email threading and de-duplication and ultimately sent just over 4,000 documents for review by our legal team. Eliminating the need to review 88% of the dataset resulted in a huge cost savings to the client and allowed us to complete the review in days rather than weeks.
If you are involved in complex litigation you may benefit from the use of e-discovery software or the expertise of an e-discovery lawyer. If you have questions about the content here or document management in complex litigation, please contact Dawn Sullivan by email or by calling 519-660-7887.