I am just back from the San Francisco instance of the Today’s General Counsel eDiscovery series. Next up is the London version, which takes place at the Brewery in Chiswell Street on 8 to 9 April.
I am one of the conference chairs; Kathy Owen, Senior Counsel at DLA Piper, and David Kessler, partner at Norton Rose Fulbright are the others. We are supported by moderators who are barristers, solicitors, eDisclosure experts or (crucially) people responsible for eDisclosure and information governance within corporations.
The information and registration page is here. Registration is free for people in companies and law firms with appropriate responsibilities – ask Jennifer McGovern for the password for free registration.
The format of these events is very different from conventional conferences. There are no PowerPoints, and the audience is not strictly an audience at all – the idea is that everybody is encouraged to take part if they choose to. The room is arranged to encourage discussion rather than lecture, and we open by asking everyone present to say what their interest is and what they hope to get out of the day.
These are interesting times for electronic disclosure in the UK. Those parts of the 2013 rule amendments specifically aimed at disclosure are only part of the story. The fall-out from the Mitchell decision is that failure to comply in any form – including failure to meet deadlines – can bring serious penalties, including the exclusion of the relevant evidence. That tends to happen to the unprepared, so it becomes important to be ready.
It is hard to keep up – judgments of varying effects are coming thick and fast but tell only part of the story; mere avoidance of sanctions is a low target – winning clients, winning cases and keeping costs within proportionate bounds are acheivable aims.
What is actually happening out there, and how are people dealing with it? This type of discussion forum is designed to encourage the sharing of information like this, and I commend this event without reservation.