E-MAIL RETENTION AND THE NEW FEDERAL RULES

Changes in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure have imposed new requirements for retention and production of electronic records in federal court litigation, especially e-mail. Here’s my notes when the changes first came to my attention.

A quick reading of some of the articles about the new FRCP revisions gives the impression that businesses should drastically change their practices to ensure long-term retention of e-mail and backup tapes, but that’s not quite correct. Here’s some quick thoughts on a more nuanced reading of the new rules:

“As long as in the normal course of your business you routinely make backups over the top of the same data, routinely delete emails, routinely… etc etc….. there are no issues whatsoever and no changes you need to make. Once you are involved in a federal court case, that’s when you need to reevaluate your process. But for now, it’s business as usual.”