In a business climate where disputes are commonplace, prudent companies are prepared for litigation at all times. Litigation readiness cannot be left to chance.

For some companies, litigation is a useful and frequently utilised tool. For others, it can be an unwelcome distraction. Regardless, given that litigation is a fact of modern business, companies would be advised to thoroughly prepare for litigation and be ready to execute a litigation strategy when required. However, in the past, too many have shown a general misunderstanding of litigation readiness, while others have been lax in drafting and implementing record management policies and procedures. Internal communication has been insufficient and technology solutions unsuitable or simply non-existent.

Thankfully, many companies are now catching on and developing best practices and operating procedures to control their electronically stored information (ESI).


By implementing a readiness plan, companies can ensure that they are well protected, particularly when it comes to disclosure of electronic data. Failure to disclose data accurately, and in a timely manner, can have considerable consequences including fines, litigation costs and reputational damage.

The importance of litigation readiness has come into sharp focus in recent years. Organisations are generating vast quantities of data, which must be organised and protected. To that end, comprehensive and robust e-discovery procedures are needed to satisfy legal, compliance and regulatory requirements. These procedures are critical for managing e-discovery and related costs. Adequate readiness strategies can have a bearing on the company’s response times, reduce disruption to business and save on expenses in the long run. Litigation readiness can also improve the overall discovery process and lower the risk of evidence tampering.

Apr-Jun 2017 issue

Richard Summerfield