Prelitigation and e-Discovery Timeline

Part of the E-Discovery For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Adhering to a pre-litigation and e-discovery timeline will keep you on track. Before litigation even starts, you must start evaluating — with your IT team and legal counsel — where you stand in terms of your electronically stored information (ESI). Here’s the process:

  • Prior to litigation: Preserve, preserve. preserve. That is, you have the duty to preserve when a legal action is reasonably anticipated. You need to take affirmative action to prevent the destruction or alteration of what might be relevant ESI.

  • Day 1: Lawsuit is filed and complaint is served on the defendant starting the clock that counts off the days.

  • By Day 99: Litigants must participate in a meet and confer conference to negotiate an e-discovery plan.

  • By Day 120: A scheduling conference is held bringing together prosecuting attorneys, defendants, defendant’s attorneys, and the judge to schedule certain dates and deadlines for the case.

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