Mark Lyon

eDiscovery Attorney

Category / Document Review

February 23, 2016

How Contract Attorneys Should Approach Downtime

Lake Louise, Canada by Roberto Nickson

Because of the project-based nature of the work, contract attorneys must constantly consider the potential for downtime, both planned and unplanned. In the eDiscovery context, for example, preliminary searches may set expectations for a large, long-term project but skillful negotiation and adjustment of search terms (or the use of analytics), entire populations can disappear overnight. Suddenly, a …

Read More
December 3, 2015

Getting Staffed

Frustrated Man - Picture by Ryan McGuire -

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, an angry DC document reviewer posted the following ad to Craigslist, a popular source of information about upcoming document review projects. I’ve redacted the agency’s name from the text, as it is not important for the discussion – similar situations can exist with almost any agency. DO NOT WORK WITH [REDACTED] …

Read More
January 4, 2015

Training a Review Team

River Region Health Center Training Room photo courtesy of Jason Wohlford ( - CC BY-SA 2.0)

The success of a document review project depends heavily on a successful training day. While the core members of the case team have likely been actively working on the matter for weeks or months, new team members will not start with the same level of knowledge and need to be quickly and efficiently brought up …

Read More
September 30, 2014

Keep Responsive and Privilege Separate

Redaction Image courtesy of Jack Zalium - CC BY-NC 2.0

I’ve encountered a number of reviews recently where combining incompatible tags and enforcing (sometimes with automatic propagation) family coding resulted in mass confusion at production time. For example, responsiveness and privilege are separate logical concepts. Faced with a single-choice field containing Responsive, Non- Responsive, Privileged, Redact, and Unreadable, reviewers are uncertain how to code a …

Read More
November 20, 2013

Asking Questions During Training

This morning, Above The Law posted seven tips for new contract attorneys. Take a moment to look over their list and explanations; generally, it contains some good advice. Their second tip, “Don’t ask hypothetical questions”, is particularly wise. Use the question time after a training to clarify any confusing or conflicting information provided in training. …

Read More
November 19, 2013

Quitting a Doc Review Project Early

Project schedules are always unpredictable. Populations and deadlines change, team members move faster or slower than expected, the database takes a nose dive on the Thursday before a production deadline or (my personal favorite) the day before you’re done, someone “finds” a population of data roughly the same size as what you just finished. When …

Read More
November 18, 2013

Why Can’t I Use My Cell Phone During Doc Review?

New reviewers often express frustration about the number of rules involved in document review. Review attorneys are generally quite intelligent and hardworking people – being told what to wear or what to do seems, for many, insulting. Rules are necessary, though, because not everyone conducts themselves in a way that respects everyone working around them. …

Read More
July 24, 2013

The Importance of Affirmative Tags

Designing an effective, intuitive coding layout is not always as easy as it seems. Often, the choices made in coding selections will color the ultimate work product, so much care and attention goes into crafting specific issue codes and responsiveness instructions that distill various requests into easily understood components. That list will then circulate through …

Read More
May 27, 2013

Draw The Boxes Straight

Redaction is one of the most complicated eDiscovery tasks to complete. In addition to the task not lending itself to verification by technology (though this is changing), the work often requires a significant amount of attention to an exceedingly tedious task. The goal of a redaction project, though, is absolute consistency. Each person applying redactions …

Read More
May 11, 2013

Flexibility Is Key

It’s Saturday at 3pm. Over a dozen members of my review team have been in the office since 8am, helping to complete a population of documents that are urgently needed for Monday. While we had a bit of advance warning, we received approval for weekend work less than 24 hours ago. Most of the team …

Read More
Older Posts