Post Process

Everything to do with E-discovery & ESI

Case Blurb: Perfect Barrier; Care needed in drafting a Protective Order

Posted by rjbiii on June 17, 2008

Requesting party submitted search terms to producing party, who executed the searches, and then produced the e-mails returned. The Producing Party then designated all e-mails from the search set “Attorneys Eyes Only,” effectively restricting the Requesting Party’s experts from immediately reviewing the documents. The Requesting Party objected to the designation, complaining that the “blanket” designation violated the agreed protective order, while the Producing Party contended that the designation was in compliance with the order. The court opines as follows:

[Requesting Party] argues that a designation of “all emails” is not a legitimate or reasonable category. However, the protective order does not indicate either in Part XIII or elsewhere what constitutes a legitimate category, and the agreed protective order does not more narrowly define what constitutes a legitimate category. Consequently, even though [Producing Party’s] designation of “emails” resulted in a very large category, it is a category. Nothing in the protective order prevents large categorical designations. If [Requesting Party] desired [Producing Party] to be more selective in its use of the confidential designation, [Requesting Party] should have utilized more care in drafting the agreed protective order to include more particular language that is consistent with its position. As it stands, the language of the protective order simply requires a “category” designation. Therefore, this Court finds that [Producing Party] followed and did not violate the protective order.

Perfect Barrier LLC v. Woodsmart Solutions Inc., 2008 WL 2230192 (N.D. Ind. May 27, 2008 )

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