Catalyst Releases New eBook on Legal Operations Strategies for Effective Oversight and Control of Discovery Spend

Gone are the days when corporate law departments could fly under the radar, operating outside of budgets (or without budgets) because litigation was deemed too capricious and unpredictable to effectively manage like other business units within the company.

Today’s corporate law department is expected to run like any other high-performing business department: on budget, with measurable results. In-house counsel and e-discovery teams, increasingly led by legal operations professionals, thus need to learn how to accommodate and work within shrinking budgets, controlling costs without sacrificing outcomes. Continue reading

Using TAR for Asian Language Discovery

In the early days, many questioned whether technology assisted review (TAR) would work for non-English documents. There were a number of reasons for this but one fear was that TAR only “understood” the English language.

Ironically, that was true in a way for the early days of e-discovery. At the time, most litigation support systems were built for ASCII text. The indexing and search software didn’t understand Asian character combinations and thus couldn’t recognize which characters should be grouped together in order to index them properly. In English (and most other Western languages) we have spaces between words, but there are no such obvious markers in many Asian languages to denote which characters go together to form useful units of meaning (equivalent to English words). Continue reading

Was It a Document Dump or a Deficient TAR Process?

TAR TalkThat’s the topic of our recent TAR Talk podcast.* We talked about the recent decision by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia In Re Domestic Airline Travel Antitrust Litigation, 2018 WL 4441507 (D.D.C. Sept. 13, 2018), an antitrust class action lawsuit against the four largest commercial airlines in the United States—American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines.

The declarations around this decision prompted much discussion in the e-discovery world, particularly for those using technology-assisted review (TAR) in the review process. The argument was based on United’s core document production. The plaintiffs called it a deficient TAR process and complained that they were forced to review mountains of non-relevant documents (aka, a document dump). Continue reading

Moving Beyond Outbound Productions: Using TAR 2.0 for Knowledge Generation and Protection

Lawyers search for documents for many different reasons. TAR 1.0 systems were primarily used to reduce review costs in outbound productions. As most know, modern TAR 2.0 protocols, which are based on continuous active learning (CAL) can support a wide range of review needs. In our last post, for example, we talked about how TAR 2.0 systems can be used effectively to support investigations.

That isn’t the end of the discussion. There are a lot of ways to use a CAL predictive ranking algorithm to move take on other types of document review projects. Here we explore various techniques for implementing a TAR 2.0 review for even more knowledge generation tasks than investigations, including opposing party reviews, depo prep and issue analysis, and privilege QC. Continue reading

How Can I Use TAR 2.0 for Investigations?

Across the legal landscape, lawyers search for documents for many different reasons. TAR 1.0 systems were primarily used to classify large numbers of documents when lawyers were reviewing documents for production. But how can you use TAR for even more document review tasks?

Modern TAR technologies (TAR 2.0 based on the continuous active learningor CALprotocol) include the ability to deal with low richness, rolling and small collections, and flexible inputs in addition to vast improvements in speed. These improvements also allow TAR to be used effectively in many more document review workflows than traditional TAR 1.0 systems. Continue reading

Five Questions to Ask Your E-Discovery Vendor About CAL

In the aftermath of studies showing that continuous active learning (CAL) is more effective than the first-generation technology assisted review (TAR 1.0) protocols, it seems like every e-discovery vendor is jumping on the bandwagon. At the least it feels like every e-discovery vendor claims to use CAL or somehow incorporate it into its TAR protocols.

Despite these claims, there remains a wide chasm between the TAR protocols available on the market today. As a TAR consumer, how can you determine whether a vendor that claims to use CAL actually does? Here are five basic questions you can ask your vendor to ensure that your review effectively employs CAL. Continue reading

Predict Proves Effective Even With High Richness Collection

Finds 94% of the Relevant Documents Despite Review Criteria Changes

Our client, a major oil and gas company, was hit with a federal investigation into alleged price fixing. The claim was that several of the drilling companies had conspired through various pricing signals to keep interest owner fees from rising with the market.1 The regulators believed they would find the evidence in the documents.

The request to produce was broad, even for this three-letter agency. Our client would have to review over 2 million documents. And the deadline to respond was short, just four months to get the job done. Continue reading

Optimizing Document Review in Compliance Investigations, Part 2

This article was originally published in Corporate Compliance Insights on August 6, 2018

Using Advanced Analytics and Continuous Active Learning to “Prove a Negative”

This is the second article in a two-part series that focuses on document review techniques for managing compliance in internal and regulatory investigations. Part 1 provided several steps for implementing an effective document review directed at achieving the objectives of a compliance investigation. This installment outlines an approach that can be used to demonstrate that there are no responsive documents to an equivalent statistical certainty – essentially proving a negative.

What Does it Mean to “Prove a Negative?”

The objective of a compliance investigation is most often to quickly locate the critical documents that will establish a cohesive fact pattern and provide the materials needed to conduct effective personnel interviews. In that situation, the documents are merely a means to an end. Continue reading

Optimizing Document Review In Compliance Investigations, Part 1

This article was originally published in Corporate Compliance Insights on July 17, 2018

Internal/Regulatory Investigations Versus Litigation

Too many corporations approach litigation and compliance investigations the same way, using the same technology, approach and people. But your approach to managing electronic information in internal and regulatory compliance investigations should differ from the one for litigation.

Most of the discussion surrounding compliance investigations focuses on best practices for planning and conducting personnel interviews. This article addresses document review, specifically electronic document review, an equally critical component of the investigation process directed at finding what some refer to as the “truth serum” for controlling those interviews and structuring much of the investigation. Continue reading

Hon. Paul Grimm and Kevin Brady of Redgrave Outline Admissibility of Digital Evidence

“Objection, foundation.”

To any seasoned trial attorney, the foundation objection shouldn’t trip up anyone. Akin to blocking and tackling in football, laying foundation for admission of evidence is almost taken for granted. But ask that same trial lawyer (only after a few adult beverages) if he or she has ever been tripped up on a foundation objection, many, if not most, will say they have. Heck, it happened to me on a couple of occasions when I was trying cases. Continue reading