Ten Things to Check on Your E-Discovery Bill
August 13, 2014
E-discovery bills are often overlooked as a source of potential cost cutting, for a number of reasons. Many corporations contract directly with their e-discovery vendors. Outside counsel, who use the services, do not see the bills. In many cases, the person reviewing the bills simply does not have a good grasp of the process and cannot distinguish between legitimate charges and overcharges or errors. Most billing issues are the result of honest mistakes, but those mistakes can be costly if not identified.
Most e-discovery experts consider good project management to be the most crucial factor to a successful engagement. Project management time should be billed in at least 1/10th of hour increments. Bills with time increments that all end in “.0” or “.5” are red flags. Vendors should be required to provide detailed descriptions of tasks performed during that time. If a task is done incorrectly and the vendor is at fault, the vendor should not charge for the fix.
If you are paying for monthly user licenses for hosting/review software, request the vendor provide a list of current billed users with each bill. Make sure that free tech-assist hours, user licenses, or other free services negotiated in your contract are expressly represented as credits on the bill.
No matter how well intentioned the parties are, mistakes happen. By working together, vendors, retained counsel and clients can identify and rectify such mistakes and streamline the e-discovery process.
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