ELECTRONIC DISCOVERY IN THE CLOUD
2011 Duke L. & Tech. Rev. 008
Cloud Computing is poised to offer tremendous benefits to clients, including inexpensive access to seemingly limitless resources that are available instantly, anywhere. To prepare for the shift from computing environments dependent on dedicated hardware to Cloud Computing, the Federal Rules of Discovery should be amended to provide relevant guidelines and exceptions for particular types of shared data. Meanwhile, clients should ensure that service contracts with Cloud providers include safeguards against inadvertent discoveries and mechanisms for complying with the Rules. Without these adaptations, clients will be either reluctant or unprepared to adopt Cloud Computing services, and forgo their benefits.
THE ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE AND DISCOVERY OF ELECTRONICALLY-STORED INFORMATION
2011 Duke L. & Tech. Rev. 001
The attorney-client privilege is the most sacred and important privilege in our legal system. Despite being at the center of daily practice, the privilege still remains a mystery for many lawyers. This is primarily because the privilege is not absolute, and there are certain actions or non-actions that may waive it. The application of the privilege is further complicated by electronic discovery, which has both benefits and drawbacks. On one hand, it has made the practice of law more efficient. On the other hand, it has made it easier to inadvertently waive the attorney-client privilege in response to a discovery request. This iBrief examines attorney-client privilege issues that may arise during e-discovery, and provides practical guidelines for attorneys responding to e-discovery requests.
ELECTRONICALLY STORED INFORMATION: BALANCING FREE DISCOVERY WITH LIMITS ON ABUSE
2009 Duke L. & Tech. Rev. 002
The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (the Rules) have long sought to limit abuses that developed under the traditional presumption favoring free discovery. The 2006 amendments to the Rules are specifically aimed at curbing abuses associated with electronically stored information (ESI), which has become the basic medium of business communications and has provided businesses with overall productivity benefits. The 2006 amendments introduce a new category of electronic evidence that is “not reasonably accessible” and allow a court to shift the related costs of discovery to the party requesting the information. Cost-shifting, however, creates an incentive for businesses to shelter sensitive data by making it “not reasonably accessible.” This iBrief argues that the current tests created by the courts for cost-shifting should be reassessed and should include a benefit-shifting component that offsets business savings from using ESI as a storage medium. Rather than treating ESI as exceptional, the Rules should adopt a uniform approach that curbs abuses of all discovery.