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Delaware Federal Court Issues New Default Standard for E-Discovery

Periodically we report on rule changes in the federal courts so that practitioners are away of these changes and how they might affect litigation practice in Delaware courts.  On December 8, 2011, the District of Delaware revised its Default Standard for Discovery Including Electronically Stored Information (the "Revised Default Standard"), which applies if the parties are unable to reach agreement on various discovery issues.  This is the third version of the default standard.  The Revised Default Standard updates the default rules regarding electronically stored information ("ESI"), taking into consideration changes in technology, as well as problems the Court and litigants have experienced in handling ESI issues and problems. The Revised Default Guidelines are available here

The Revised Default Standard expressly covers preservation of discoverable information, privilege logs, the initial discovery conference, initial disclosures, and electronic discovery procedures.  In addition, with the heavy docket that the District of Delaware has in terms of patent cases, there are specific procedures related to initial infringement and invalidity contentions in patent cases.  But, more broadly, the Default Standard for Discovery reiterates the Court's expectation that litigants will meet and confer early in the litigation about all aspects of discovery, and that the parties will agree on reasonable limits to discovery that are proportional and tailored to the parties and the issues.

Some of the key features of the Revised Default Standard include:

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Read more Delaware business litigation case summaries and commentary on Delaware Corporate and Commercial Litigation Blog, a blog hosted by Francis G.X. Pileggi, of Eckert Seamans.

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