How Legal Coding Empowers Legal Professionals

May 2021
How Legal Coding Empowers Legal Professionals
Legal documents can range from a single form to bulky case law running into hundreds of pages. Litigation Coding or Legal Document Coding is an effective tool that allows attorneys to quickly drill down to the relevant documents in their case. Legal coders enable reviewers to run pin-point searches to identify only the documents they need to make their case, by accurately extracting crucial information from a document collection. The process of hiring and training of full-time resources to index and code legal documents is expensive. Expedited discovery needs come and go, so having these resources on an on-going retainer present significant costs to the firm.  The best way to implement an effective litigation/legal coding process is to outsource legal coding to litigation support service providers that specialize in the field. Third-party service providers have dedicated teams which are adept at carrying out legal coding tasks accurately and at costs far lower than those commanded by internal resources. By leveraging litigation coding professionals, data can be accessed quickly, enabling the attorneys to expedite review in preparation for trial. In today’s world when time is money, expert legal coding is a must-have for all attorneys and law firms.

The Real Benefits of Legal Coding: Easily Access Key Information

An error-free document review process is enhanced by the ease of filtering out irrelevant information. Having well-indexed and sorted documents, eases the fact-finding process by allowing reviewers to search for key terms and names relevant to their case and in many cases identify and dispose of irrelevant documents that clutter the review landscape. Legal coding enables attorneys and lawyers to access relevant information fast which not only saves time but also augments the quality of the services they provide to their clients.

Another crucial benefit of legal coding is that it is comprehensive in nature.  Once the legal documents have undergone the process of litigation coding, the results are always available, and the files do not have to go through the process of categorization ever again. This represents a huge benefit when it comes to archival of legal files and the associated costs or records storage. Records management fees both in the form of onsite square footage and offsite storage cost many firms thousands of dollars each month.  Why not ditch the paper and digitize those files?  With data entry and document coding, you can preserve the data forever in a much more cost-efficient way.

Outsourcing is the most efficient way to utilize legal coding.   It boosts productivity while reducing their costs tremendously. Outsourcing bibliographic coding is a win-win situation for law firms and attorneys.

Automated analytics-based tools which attempt to classify relevant data without manual intervention are not free from error. Many times, these tools miss out on capturing data which can only be gathered from a thorough review carried out by trained litigation coding professionals.  It is absolutely critical that lawyers and law firms not rely solely on automated solutions when manual review and of the task of litigation coding can be performed to perfection at low cost and with no risk of omission.

Litigation Support Solutions to Streamline Review

Effectiveness of a search index can be assessed by the document unitization it is based on. Document unitization or Logical Document Determination (LDD) is the procedure by which the boundary of a document is established by identifying logical breaks. Large PDF documents with no metadata, unstructured data dumps and scanned images without any physical boundaries have no logical boundaries defined. It is absolutely critical for the success of a coding effort that multiple documents embedded or ganged together are separated into logical parts prior to indexing. Outsourcing LDD processes is time-saving and cost effective. Third-party service providers have the expertise and a well-equipped team to unitize thousands of documents in a day!

Bibliographic coding is utilized to extract objective and subjective data from documents. A manual review of each document is comprehensively carried out, in order to capture pertinent data. Standard data points include date, author, recipient, document title and document type but custom coding palettes are readily facilitated and can be tailored to your individual case needs.  If a matter surrounds shipping of goods, employment matters regarding working hours, etc. – author and recipient info may be irrelevant and a deeper dive on items such as employee name or goods being shipped may be more appropriate.

Bibliographic Coding and Manual Data Entry are powerful tools and indispensable for mining data from handwritten documents, or those of poor quality.  OCR simply cannot render results that can be reliably searched.  While the majority of records in a given database may have electronically sourced metadata, others are likely to be incomplete or erroneous.  How confident can you be in your searches?

Reviewing complex legal documents such as contracts poses a challenge to attorneys and law firms. Documents which are replete with legal jargon do not only require indexing but also custom data capture and subjective coding. Subjective coding supports an attorney, by capturing relevant information from deep within the text. Pertinent information such as key names, important terms, signatory parties etc. can be abstracted through the process of subjective coding.

Some documents deemed relevant to a case must to be presented in a confidential manner where PHI, PII or information subject to attorney/client privilege must be redacted beforehand. This is again a painstaking laborious process but absolutely critical to ensure court compliance.  The same experts that provide legal coding are adept and handling manual redaction services as well. Attorneys and law firms can simply outsource this task to prepare documents for use in depositions and court hearings without fear of any compromise on data privacy.

To summarize, legal or litigation coding is a boon for attorneys and law firms. Due to paucity of time and the costs associated, attorneys and law firms cannot be expected to engage in legal coding tasks directly when better options abound. These tasks should be outsourced to litigation support providers with dedicated resources trained to code documents accurately. Outsourcing legal coding can help firms save time, cost and allows legal professionals to focus on core tasks. Optimize your review the cost-effective way – outsource your legal coding and other litigation support tasks today.

Call +1-888-524-7348 or email today for info on our professional outsourced legal services.