In-House Document Review:


These days data storage is virtually limitless and new workplace technologies are frequently emerging. This means companies are generating more data every year. Because of this significant data increase, legal teams have the issues of preserving, collecting, and reviewing the electronically stored information (ESI), but are also under pressure to reduce costs and spending.


Data processing and review are the most costly stage of the electronic discovery reference model (EDRM). Most in-house legal teams do not have the resources to review all data on their own, but outsourcing for review can be expensive. For in-house review, it is vital to ensure your team with the right review tools and programs. Processing data in-house drastically reduces costs. With this option, a company can also create their own timeline of when they will give the data to outside counsel.


A balance between in-house review and outsourcing can be achieved. In cases like class action suites, outsourcing combined with in-house review could be a better alternative. It is better to reserve funds to outsource review for large, complex, and high risk cases. Trusting an established vendor for those types of cases is a smarter option since that is what they do best.


What is the best way to implement in-house review? First a company must identify any gaps by asking the following questions:

  1. Does the company have the ability to process data? Can it turn the ESI from different data sources into a format that is easily viewed and tagged?
  2. Where does the processed data live? Does the company have a secure storage location that will protect highly sensitive matter data?
  3. Can the data be easily exported? If outside counsel is involved, does the company have the ability to only send the data counsel should review?
  4. Does the company have a review tool? Or do they rely on email systems and PDF viewers that are labor intensive and risky if metadata is altered during the review process?


Formulating a concise in-house document review process will help reduce costs significantly. It will also help a company decide when outsourcing is the better option.


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