Law penalises data disorder
As your recent article pointed out, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) were recently revised to clear up how US courts should approach electronic evidence - called Electronically Stored Information or ESI (Firms ignoring e-discovery law, 5 March). The ramifications of this change will be extensive and potentially very costly.
US courts are becoming increasingly hostile towards companies that are unprepared or unable to find electronic information relevant to a trial. Some courts have previously shied away from electronic information altogether, but those days are clearly behind us. ESI will now play a starring role in most US litigation.
The new rules do put a limit on what can be made part of a lawsuit - the information must be “reasonably accessible”. But ignoring the whole issue is not reasonable, so companies with a US connection need to take steps now to get their records in order.
Craig Carpenter, Recommind