Responding to burgeoning costs and delays in federal litigation — largely attributed to expanded discovery — the New York State Bar Association is recommending rule changes and new guidelines to ease the burden on the federal court system, as well as on litigants.
The recommendations are contained in the “Report of the Special Committee on Discovery and Case Management in Federal Litigation,” which was approved by the association’s House of Delegates at its June 23 meeting in Cooperstown.
“The increasing use of technologies — including email, text messaging, social media and the cloud — have complicated the discovery process, causing long delays and exorbitant costs in federal litigation,” said NYSBA President Seymour W. James Jr. (The Legal Aid Society of New York). “This report presents sensible and practical solutions to this growing crisis.”
The committee, created by then-state bar association President Stephen P. Younger in 2010, was asked to examine the perceived delays and expense of litigation in federal court and to make recommendations to reduce both. The proposals seek to make the discovery process more efficient and less burdensome and to tie discovery to the procedural developments in the case.
The report examined four key aspects of federal litigation. Specifically: The absence of rules regarding preservation and spoliation in Rules of Civil Procedure, the need for early judicial intervention, legal obligations in document production and reducing the burden of discovery.
A copy of the report is available at www.nysba.org/federaldiscoveryreport.