April 30, 2018 technology

Document Review in the Digital Age

By Julia Voss and David Simmons

Every day businesses generate and manage an incredible volume of email and other data. Even individuals generate and store large amounts of data, be it on their email accounts, cloud drives, social media, their Fitbit, or on their phones. Keeping track of the data can be a daunting task. Once litigation hits, a new question arises: How are the lawyers going to review it all?

iStockphoto by Getty Images

As the volume of data increases, the costs of a manual document review can quickly eclipse the value of the case. But do not worry: Despite all the hype, the robots are not coming for your job. The robots are coming to help you do your job more effectively. Analytics, including technology-assisted review (known as “TAR” or “predictive coding”), is becoming more commonplace and has been accepted by numerous courts worldwide. In fact, many courts suggest that using analytics is better than a manual review of all the documents. Many lawyers, however, still do not use these tools or understand their benefits.

This article is the first in a series exploring analytics—especially TAR. In this article, we will lay the foundation for understanding what analytics tools are available in many software platforms for legal document review. In future articles, we will discuss the case law surrounding TAR and the ethical considerations when using the technology.

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