There will two big winners should the proposed amendments to the Federal Rules for Civil Procedure (FRCP) clear the U.S. Supreme Court as expected, according to a recent Law Technology News article: Information governance professionals and e-discovery consultants. So predicted Helen Geib, general counsel and practice support consultant for QDiscovery.
The proposed changes emphasize the need to:
- Know what electronically stored information (ESI) the client has early in the case
- Understand the technology for handling the data
“The amendments’ focus on preservation is a strong argument for better information governance,” reasoned Geib. “In-house counsel must know the what, where, why, who, and how their company’s ESI to effectively implement and manage a litigation hold.” Improved information governance, she noted, not only increases the company’s ability to defend against preservation-compliance challenges, it helps in controlling costs.
That doesn’t mean litigators will be off the hook. The pressure will continue to be on them to become more familiar with ESI and IT systems.
“Even if the actual work of data mapping the client’s ESI is delegated to others, lawyers must still be able to effectively communicate about ESI in the meet and confer, discovery plan, written discovery, and so on,” said Geib.