Survey: lawsuits down, data-saving up.
The recent Litigation An action brought in court to enforce a particular right. The act or process of bringing a lawsuit in and of itself; a judicial contest; any dispute.
When a person begins a civil lawsuit, the person enters into a process called litigation. Trends Survey from international law firm Fulbright & Jaworski LLP LLP - Lower Layer Protocol reveals that while internal investigations and lawsuits have dropped slightly, one-third of U.S. businesses still face at least 25 lawsuits, and 18 percent are defending more than 100 cases domestically.
Based on interviews with in-house counsel at 253 major U.S. corporations and 50 from U.K. law departments, 17 percent of respondents In the context of marketing research, a representative sample drawn from a larger population of people from whom information is collected and used to develop or confirm marketing strategy. said their companies had escaped the past year without having to defend a single new lawsuit lawsuit: see procedure; tort. , up from only 11 percent in 2005-06.
Government regulators don't appear to be as threatening, either, as 48 percent of companies reported some regulatory proceedings brought against them in the past 12 months, down more than 4 percent from a year ago. Internal investigations fell even more sharply. Fifty-four percent confirmed launching a company probe in the past year--a decline from 2006, when 63 percent of counsel reported initiating an investigation. By contrast, the survey said U.K. companies have experienced significant increases in both categories.
The Fulbright survey, the largest study of its kind, takes a macro look at U.S. and U.K. litigation and arbitration issues, covering such topics as internal investigations, electronic discovery and records retention, and average settlements. Other findings include:
* E-discovery: More than 70 percent of counsel said e-discovery issues "rarely" or "never" figured in their litigation matters, but 13 percent of billion-dollar firms said it plays a frequent role; 18 percent reported that e-discovery guidelines guidelines,
n.pl a set of standards, criteria, or specifications to be used or followed in the performance of certain tasks. have eased their litigation issues, while 27 percent said the rules have actually made their litigation lives more difficult.
* Records retention: The average business said it retains documents for just two to three months, and only 14 percent said they back up for one year or longer. The survey found that not one firm earning less than $100 million maintains a backup threshold of one year or longer, which could prove costly in the event of a court-ordered document request. On the bright side, 89 percent of in-house counsel said their companies now have procedures to ensure preservation of all data that may relate to a legal or regulatory action. For billion-dollar companies, 98 percent of respondents said they had litigation hold Retaining data that may be used in a legal action. A litigation hold, also called a "preservation order," overrides the normal storage management procedure and ensures that certain data are maintained intact from that point forward. policies. Also, 81 percent of U.S. companies said they had reviewed their retention policies over the previous 12 months.
* Instant messaging Exchanging text messages in real time between two or more people logged into a particular instant messaging (IM) service. Instant messaging is more interactive than e-mail because messages are sent immediately, whereas e-mail messages can be queued up in a mail server for seconds or : Fifty-three percent of respondents said employees use IM, while the rate among billion-dollar firms was 70 percent. Almost 30 percent of all respondents said their firms retain the messages as routine policy or in certain cases; 40 percent said billion-dollar firms retain IMs. While many companies may archive IMs for only a month at the most, 43 percent keep them for two months or longer, including 15 percent that hold on to them for at least a year (25 percent among large companies).
* Voicemail: Forty percent of in-house counsel said they have a retention policy for employee voice messages. Most of the messages are saved for a month or less, but 31 percent of companies store voicemail for at least two months, including 9 percent with a one-year or longer hold policy.
* E-mail: Thirty-seven percent of survey respondents said they allow employees to access outside e-mail accounts e-mail account n → cuenta de correo using company-issued computers; billion-dollar companies allowed this 44 percent of the time. Three-fourths, or 74 percent, let employees access the corporate network from their home computers.
* Privacy policies: Only 39 percent of in-house counsel said their firms have a fun-time privacy officer, and a surprising 60 percent admitted to having no current plans to hire one.
States with E-Discovery Rules
Amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) are rules governing civil procedure in United States district (federal) courts, that is, court procedures for civil suits. The FRCP are promulgated by the United States Supreme Court pursuant to the Rules Enabling Act, and then approved became effective December 1, 2006, mandating rules for discovery of electronic evidence in federal courts. But U.S. states A U.S. state is any one of the fifty subnational entities of the United States, although four states use the official title "commonwealth". The separate state governments and the federal government share sovereignty, in that an American is a citizen both of the federal entity and are adopting their own rules to address discovery in state and local court cases. The following states have passed e-discovery laws (with the year their law became effective in parenthesis parenthesis: see punctuation.
The left parenthesis "(" and right parenthesis ")" are used to delineate one expression from another. For example, in the query list for size="34" and (color = "red" or color ="green") ):
* Arizona (2008)
* Idaho (2006)
* New Jersey (2006)
* Indiana (2007)
* Minnesota (2007)
* New Hampshire New Hampshire, one of the New England states of the NE United States. It is bordered by Massachusetts (S), Vermont, with the Connecticut R. forming the boundary (W), the Canadian province of Quebec (NW), and Maine and a short strip of the Atlantic Ocean (E). (2007)
States that have proposed rules:
States studying the issue:
Source: The National Law Journal
To access the full survey results, go to www.fulbright.com/litigationtrends.