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Defining eDiscovery and the Electronic Discovery Process

eDiscovery (electronic discovery) refers to a legal process of “discovering” electronic data which is potentially relevant to litigation.

 

Why Is Electronic Evidence Important?

We see over history that all forms of evidence can be crucial to uncover the truth and come to a fair resolution of legal disputes. This search for truth is one of the values of the U.S. legal system. The United States, among other countries like Canada and UK allow parties to subpoena the opposing party or even a third party for documents which is not the case in many other countries. The 2006 amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure included a specific provision that declared electronically stored information (ESI) to be discoverable in U.S. litigation. Now, almost all information which was once managed as paper documents is now stored electronically. The rise of technology has created a growing need for attorneys and legal teams to have the baseline technological proficiency to review these documents, understand the metadata behind them and ensure proper discovery of all potentially relevant information. The most common form of electronic evidence is email, but eDiscovery can extend far beyond that to a range of data types that could be drawn from a desktop, server, cloud platform, mobile device or even an internet of things device.