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Baby steps to eDiscovery

Neesons is offering shared-device facilities so lawyers can easily display electronic documents during trials, discoveries and other proceedings, says its founder and president Kim Neeson.

“It gives them the ability to share screens — it’s super simple,” she tells AdvocateDaily.com. “I look at it as a baby step towards a paperless proceeding.”

Neeson, whose company is dedicated to using the latest technology to assist lawyers and others in the court process, says all it takes to use the system is the availability of digital documents such as a PDF.

“It’s really as easy as plugging in your laptop and showing documents,” she says.

“It doesn’t require any software or training with a new program. It's non-interactive, but it’s a way to get started in electronic documents without any extra knowledge whatsoever. It’s the perfect introduction.”

The documents from one computer are displayed on a series of screens placed around the room so that all parties in a proceeding can read them, Neeson explains. 

“All the person showing the documents has to do is share their screen,” she says. “That person plugs in their computer and we take care of the rest.”

Neesons offers a number of eDiscovery rooms at their King Street West office to provide this service to clients. 

The company has recently been hired to work on a proceeding where there are eight screens placed around a table so that all parties can see the pertinent documents, Neeson says. 

“When the lawyers want to refer to a document, they call it up on their computer and it’s shared to all the screens,” she says. “That means everyone sitting around the table can see the pertinent files. They don’t have to lug around boxes of documents and they can all be looking at the same page at the same time.”

She notes only the relevant materials are shared on the screen.

Neeson says the system saves law firms a great deal of money because they don't have to provide paper copies of the files. 

“Still, many firms continue to print electronic documents. That process includes sorting, doing quality control to make sure the files are readable, placing tabs, bindings, etc.,” she says. “The files also have to be shipped back to the law firm after a proceeding and then stored. It’s expensive and time consuming.”

For those interested in moving toward a paperless system with electronic documents and eDiscovery, Neesons also offers cloud and non-cloud-based Exhibit Bridge software. 

With the non-cloud-based system, lawyers load discovery documents onto a USB stick provided by Neesons. Through a secure connection, they're routed to an iPad app that allows counsel to present and mark up documents and label material as exhibits. Users can take notes on the exhibits and keep them private, adds Neeson.

The cloud-based system involves each firm using its own cloud account from which counsel can pull documents for analysis. 

But for those lawyers not yet in a position to move to such software, Neesons offers the ability to display documents in a proceeding through shared screens. 

Neesons has been getting a great deal of positive feedback from their clients about the use of the shared screen which, like Exhibit Bridge, doesn't require any document printing.

“We’re finding that people love it,” Neesons says. “It’s great way to get started in using digital documents in different types of proceedings.”

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