Consider the Consequences: Today’s Document Review Attorneys

Consider the consequence

Today, even for large law firms, one significant litigation or government investigation matter can lead to lawyers carefully reviewing thousands, or tens of thousands, of emails and memos and PowerPoints and spreadsheets from key players inside your client company for privilege, trade secrets, or any number of important facts and issues.

The powerful alchemy of AI and magic mojo of machine learning has not put document review attorneys across the globe out of business just yet.

The relentless flow of email, Slack and Asana, iMessage and Skype, and the move to Office365 means there is a lot of content for boards and their attorneys to worry about. Maybe the robots will skillfully handle all this doc review one day soon, but for now ramping up a document review project — even after all the technology-enabled culling has happened just right — is an important and expensive undertaking.

Sensitive Documents Need Sensitive Environments

Often, depending on the number of docs, the complexity of the issues, and the number of bold-face names on the witness list, there may be an army of contract lawyers in Florida or Nashville or Bangalore that get to read these emails and docs. If you’ve done all your ECA and TAR just right, you still have a bunch of sensitive docs and email from the important custodians, perhaps even C-level players, that attorneys need to pore over and make a decision about.

In many instances, contract attorneys will be needed to help your associates review the documents if you are to meet the court’s discovery schedule (or the strategically negotiated schedule with the DOJ lawyer).

It happens every day in the AMLAW 100 and 200, in the Magic Circle, and in the Big Four. Projects are bigger each year and it takes teams of firms to handle today’s complex litigation and investigation matters. If it has not already happened to you, it will soon. Many of the people you (and your clients) need to work on the matter will NOT work at your firm.

For Document Review, Don’t Rely on Trust

Can you trust your ediscovery or “managed review” provider to have really thought through all the complexities of today’s infosec issues? Can they afford the latest in DLP software? They too are taking advantage of the gig economy players with rented space at the start of each review project. Ten or 20 or 80 contract lawyers working at PCs set up on folding tables yesterday; lawyers who were working somewhere else last week.

How secure are these doc review operations? What can these vendors — with thin margins — focus on: good IT people, best practice procedures, or good review attorneys? If only there was a third-party providing security-as-a-service for legal document reviews.

The fake Windows update is a never ending process which can prank your friends when you open it in full screen (F11) on their computer.