Not too long ago, privilege review was a tedious, thankless job. But thanks to recent developments in technology, its status has changed. Privilege review has grown more complex. As a result, the market is growing, and many sub-specialties are emerging.
There’s a good chance you’ll have to deal with privilege review at some point in your career. When you do, you want to be ready, especially because it’s a demanding role that requires a quick turnaround.
Having an Impact With Privilege Review
But don’t let the need for speed fool you when you’re on the job. As you know, privilege reviewer is an important role. One mistake could send the opposition a smoking gun, throwing off an entire case.
With that in mind, here are a few skills you’ll need to be an effective privilege reviewer:
1. Understand the jurisdiction you’re working in.
Every jurisdiction has different rules on privilege review, especially when it comes to options like clawbacks. This becomes important when you’re freelancing for firms in different cities. For example, the rules in Oakland, CA, might not be the same as those in Buffalo, NY.
2. Keep up on trends.
Because privilege review is a growing market (and electronic data is increasing exponentially), the entire process is garnering attention from researchers. These researchers are developing new approaches to streamline the privilege review process — approaches that don’t necessarily require advanced software for assistance. For example, researchers at the University of Maryland have found an email’s privilege is predictable based on who’s involved in the email chain.
3. Cataloging techniques.
When there are literally thousands and thousands of documents to sort through, advanced categorizational skills are required. Proper labelling helps you and anyone else who comes across a document know exactly where it stands in the process — and whether or not there’s a chance the item is privileged. But there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Many professionals in the field have developed their own techniques for cataloging such huge quantities of documents. Following one that works (and communicating it to the rest of the review team) will ensure success.
4. Know your technology.
Privilege review technology is growing increasingly more powerful and complex, allowing you to complete assignments that would have been impossible just a couple of decades ago. Regularly engage with your software vendor’s manuals, webinars, and blogs to use the technology to its full potential. Sometimes it’s the best features that will take you from being good at privilege review to being great at it.
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