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Because individual plaintiffs often have little electronic data of their own to preserve and produce, they are often able to use e-discovery requests as a weapon to make life miserable for the corporate defendant, who must search, gather, process, review and produce potentially onerous volumes of data. Some plaintiffs successfully count on the corporate defendant to settle these cases, regardless of the merits, because a cost-benefits analysis frequently yields the conclusion that settlement will be cheaper than the costs of responding to e-discovery requests alone.

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