Friday, July 23, 2010

If you keep it, it will cost you.

“I am thinking my company would like to be sued and I want to make it as painful as I can.”
“Brilliant. Seems like a prudent plan.”
“What can I do to spend a million dollars or more on discovery?”
“First don’t implement a records program so information will stay around way too long. Then when litigation happens you can do discovery on more stuff, some of it really old.”
“OK. Seems like a perfect plan. By the way, would we ever have to go way back in time for discovery?”
“Sure, if it’s around and potentially relevant you may have to do discovery on it."
"OK, got it.”

In Takeda Pharm. Co. v. Teva Pharm. USA, the litigants had to go back and unearth records 18 years old and it was projected to cost well over a million dollars just to look, excluding lawyer review time. OUCH.

The only way you can clean house and not worry about destruction of evidence claims is have reasonable records retention rules. Many companies (not unlike the ones above) who keep stuff around and don’t apply retention rules, from here on out it only gets more painful and expensive.

How about bringing your record program into 2011 and helping your company out for real.

Are you kidding me.

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