9 Common Pitfalls to Avoid in a Document Review Process!

Legal Document review
Last updated: 12 Sep, 2019

The document review process holds immense importance during litigation and is considered to be an expensive and labor-intensive task. It constitutes one of the major stages of the Electronic Discovery Reference Model (EDRM). The documents concerned with the litigation are assessed carefully for their responsiveness and relevance.

The lawyers who review the documents must review them one by one to know the kind of information they contain and how useful that information is to the case. Adding tags, such as ‘hot’, ‘important’, ‘negative’, etc., help in collecting the most valuable information for the later use during the trial.

9 Common Document Review Process Pitfalls:

1.  Unplanned Document Review

It is vital to plan a document review since not doing so results in the following mistakes:-

  • New document findings needing assessment apart from the originals
  • Adopting unprofessional discovery methods leading to high costs
  • Missing out on the original documents

2. Doing Everything on Your Own

Today, technology has revolutionized everything and the legal industry is not lagging behind. A senior attorney might be good at reviewing the documents but may not be good at using the new legal technology comprising of software which makes navigating the information easy.

So, it is recommended to have a team where every member is equipped with the right skills in order to address the different document review tasks.

3. Unavailability of People

An appropriate document review processing requires the active participation of different people and when things are unplanned, people are usually unavailable.

According to a global provider of contract management services, the solution to this type of problem is the use of an electronic system wherein the sign of the original person can be replaced by the alternate signer.

4. Using Obsolete Revision Methods

The obsolete revision methods should be left out when the new methods of revision become more productive. A lot of errors are observed while one is trying to use an obsolete revision procedure.

Apart from this, extra electronic or paper copies often leads to problematic document access along with the arduous task of finding them.

5. Document Review Neglecting During Cycling

The document review process needs to be followed appropriately in order to make sure the content is accurate and applicable as per the objectives of the project. In most of the cases, the document changes are not reflected in the final outcome since the documentation is not updated. An effective system can help in syncing the documentation process and the actual process and remove the possibility of any error.

6. Unassigned Review Checks

A lot of people are involved in the document review process and not elaborating to particular participants what and when to check, surely needs attention. If you want to ensure that each and every change gets documented well and perfectly executed, you need to involve the right people in the process for change control.

7. Document Searching

There always comes a time in the litigation process when you need to review the documents for references. Using old methods of storing and finding the documents during reference checks is something which not only delays the process but also brings down its quality.

It is important to move with the latest technological trends and incorporate the use of software for a seamless document storing and finding.

8. Obsolete Documents Misuse

Maintaining document archives is vital not only to avoid any kind of misuse but for the historical reasons as well and one should keep the documents stored as per their effectiveness. Documents contain information that is vital, for sure.

Not taking appropriate measures to renew or secure them may lead to their misuse, leading to the overall quality loss in the review process due to poor storage and lack of references.

9. Untimely ECO Release

The change control process is not completed without an ECO release. It contains document sets along with the changes in the document revision and the corrected version of it.

The traditional methods which include in-depth observation and document controlling pave way for high human errors due to the shortage of time. Such ECO releases should be addressed through the use of the latest document review technology.


It has been clearly established that use of the latest technology is essential in order to easily manage the document storing and navigating at the time of references. Apart from the skills and knowledge required for the perfect document reviewing, it is also essential to make the best use of technology.

With so many documents to review in a limited amount of time, hiring the providers of outsourcing legal document drafting services has proved to be really fruitful to the law firms and attorneys across the globe. Outsourcing not only streamlines the document reviewing process but also leads to cost-savings, increased efficiencies along with saving time and efforts.

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