Case Law

Court “Rather Reluctantly” Intervenes in Discovery Dispute, Prefers the Use of TAR Before Culling by Search Terms

Michigan

FCA US LLC v. Cummins, Inc., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45212 (E.D. Mich. Mar. 28, 2017) In this automobile part recall case, the parties disagreed about the proper ediscovery protocol; specifically, whether prior to utilizing Technology Assisted Review (TAR) to review documents, is it apposite to first cull electronic documents with search terms. The plaintiff argued that it was not proper, while the defendant argued that starting with search terms was appropriate. Hesitant to involve itself, “[g]iven the magnitude of the dispute and the substantial matters upon which they agree,” the court noted that the parties should have been able to settle this dispute. Nevertheless, the court conducted an extensive review of letters and proposed orders, including reading The Sedona Conference TAR Case Law Primer, and found that it is preferable to employ TAR prior to conducting a word search.

Keywords: TAR, discovery, culling, search terms, predictive coding