Dont’ Delete Electronic Records. The Court Might Need Them

You might be tempted to think that only “big businesses” have to worry about record retention. This is not the case. Even smaller businesses have to concern themselves with keeping certain records and ensuring that upon demand they can be easily (relatively) retrieved.
The National Federation of Independent Business writes Under new federal court rules that went into effect December 1, businesses should ensure that they have policies in place to manage and maintain electronic documents and information, including e-mail communications. The reason: Court rules now require that businesses provide plaintiffs access to electronic documents that might be used in litigation, even before a request for the documents has been made.
There are many companies that can ensure your email is archived and available for recovery when you might need it. If you use Microsoft Exchange there are many solutions available for you. If your email is hosted by an email provided discuss with them how the new federal law might affect you.
It’s important that you establish a corporate and employee email retention policy.
NFIB writes To help ensure that relevant information relating to the pending lawsuit is preserved, businesses are now required to meet and confer with plaintiffs in litigation within 90 days after the appearance of a defendant, or 120 days after the complaint has been served on a defendant. At the initial meeting, the parties must disclose to each other “a copy of, or a description by category and location of, all documents, electronically stored information, and tangible things that are in the possession, custody, or control of the party and that the disclosing party may use to support its claims or defenses.”