A Guide to Electronically Stored Information Preservation Responsibilities

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Co-authored by Thomas W. Tobin

The litigation-related duty to preserve relevant evidence, including electronically stored information (ESI), is well established and widely known in the legal community and the business world. Despite broad familiarity with this obligation, many corporate litigants have recently been subjected to severe sanctions due to an increasing judicial intolerance for the failure to preserve ESI. While some such sanctions involve the imposition of legal fees, in many instances courts have issued severe adverse jury instructions, effectively destroying a litigant’s chance of prevailing or waging an effective defense.

In today’s legal climate, even a company’s seemingly innocent delay in implementing an appropriate method to preserve ESI may be catastrophic. As a result, the duty to preserve relevant evidence, including ESI, is too important to ignore, not only for those individuals engaged in litigation on a daily basis but also for company management seeking to control costs and expenses.

This white paper guides litigants through their responsibilities to preserve evidence and provides valuable information on implementing a defensible legal hold process. While reading this paper is an important first step, there is no substitute for a thorough discussion of your specific circumstances as they relate to the matter.

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Originally published on Friday, December 7, 2014
2102 views at time of republishing

Daniel Barude

Daniel Braude, co-chair of Wilson Elser’s e-Discovery team, centers his practice on complex litigation involving product liability and commercial disputes, with an emphasis on related electronic discovery and document preservation issues. Focused on the information lifecycle, Dan addresses the challenges associated with changing technology, cloud computing, and related data privacy and information security issues.

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