Corporate legal departments may be using downtime enforced by COVID-19-related shutdowns to reevaluate their approach to e-discovery. Those discussions are likely to revolve around whether it’s more cost-effective to handle e-discovery-related tasks such as collections or processing in-house, or attempt to renegotiate contracts with vendors weathering the same injured economy.

Before the outbreak of COVID-19, the answer would probably have been more straightforward. Recent trends suggest that legal departments were taking more control over the e-discovery process by moving those functions in-house to increase long-term savings. Last October, Exterro’s 2019 In-House Legal Benchmark Report showed that 50% of respondents had a formal or informal e-discovery team. But could potential COVID-19-related layoffs or financial hardships make it harder for legal departments to maintain that trend?

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