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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Can E-Discovery Really Be That Expensive?

I tend to have a "Mark Twain perspective" on statistics and apply a healthy grain of salt to any numbers quoted by analysts and industry experts. But when end-users speak, I sit up and listen. That's why I was very interested to read here that Microsoft "spends an average of US$ 20 million for e-discovery per litigation, according to one company exec." (My thanks to George for alterting me to the article)

If true, it is an astounding number - but one that is quite consistent with what we have seen first hand working with other large enterprises ourselves. Once you factor in processing costs (an average of $1,800 per GB), review costs ($200/hour), and the huge volume of information being generated and stored, you can get up to $20 million on a single case surprisingly fast.

1 comment:

Malay said...

There is an interesting article on this topic in the lastest issue of the Economist.

Mr Wheeler ranks e-discovery as “the single most significant change to the legal system” since he left law school in 1969. Richard Baer, the top in-house lawyer for Qwest, a telecoms firm, will not go quite so far, but he agrees that it is a problem. He thinks his firm spends at least 25% more on legal fees relating to discovery than it did two years ago.