There’s an issue with previous legal hold-to-ELM software product integrations: It’s non-existent. Or it adds inconvenience and inefficiency to what should be a streamlined process.
Legal holds are issued when litigation is pending or anticipated, and organizations (per FRCP regulations) have a “duty to preserve” all related evidence/information pertinent to the matter in question.
The common practice with corporate legal departments using a dedicated Enterprise Legal Management (ELM) system is to create a legal matter in the ELM in case of pending or anticipated litigation. They then issue legal holds to the potential “custodians” of data for that matter.
Now, if the corporate legal department is using a separate tool for managing legal holds, and there is no true bi-directional sync with the ELM, they have to manually enter all the matter information in the Legal Hold product. This, of course, is time-consuming and cumbersome and prone to user error.
In a situation where changes have to be made to the matter, like changing the scope or adding/removing legal staff, those updates also have to be made manually, increasing the risk of mistakes. Additionally on the ELM side, there’s no visibility into the status of legal holds for active matters, forcing legal department users to have to access two independent systems to manage the legal hold process, causing extra overhead and even further complications.
When a legal matter is created in the ELM, users can issue a legal hold directly from within the matter. All matter information – like matter name, description, assigned legal staff, and so on – is automatically populated within LegalHold. Any time a change occurs on the matter (like adding/removing attorneys, for instance), that gets updated in LegalHold. Conversely, any updates to the hold information in Legal Hold are automatically updated in the ELM, as well.
This integration with our ELM products also supports SSO, so the user can directly access LegalHold directly from within the matter inside the ELM without being forced to log in separately into Legal Hold.
Additionally, this integration also imposes matter security restrictions in the case of private or restricted matters. Users in LegalHold will not be able to access holds for matters where they haven’t been given access in the ELM. This is a feature we’ve build for TeamConnect, and it’s on the product roadmap for eCounsel.
The main benefit of this integration? It provides a true single source of truth that revolves around each legal matter. The legal department is now able to manage all their holds from within their Mitratech ELM, which minimizes mistakes and streamlines the process significantly.
Better still? For corporate legal departments, time – staff time, that is – is money. Not only does this integration provide greater convenience, it eliminates the time spent flipping between applications. This may not seem like a “black hole” consuming staff hours, on first glance, but consider how much time may be spent just navigating between non-integrated applications over the course of a year? You can see how the costs mount up.
Integrations like these are based on feedback from our LegalHold clients, who are on the front lines of trying to find ways to be more efficient and productive. More innovations like this are on the way, not least because they themselves are constantly leading that charge.