I have litigation support application but I am not licensed to practice litigation support.
The application can read many standard load formats for what as been produced.
The purpose is you can take it to the court room and and have everything without an Internet connection.
Finally the question.
If a customer cannot load the data and the sends the raw data to me to load is that breaking the chain of custody?
It has already been Produced. Has chain of custody passed? Clearly I am not an attorney.
This is US.
There is no chain of custody tag
Since IANAL I am sure some of my terms are wrong. Once a trial is granted each side can ask for data. In the Enron case 800,000 documents were collected and I don't know how many were actually produced. There will be a matter and they typically agree to certain file shares and certain email accounts. And often certain words - it is often referred to as go fish. If that come back to be 20 millions documents they will argue to trim the collection. The collection starts the chain of custody. The data is collected (e.g. hard drives), it is typically loaded into a litigation support application. There will be a formal definition of responsive document. In the Enron case it was certain type of trades. Responsive documents are identified and redacted. This is formally called review. Typically each page produced will have a bates number. Then the documents and agreed meta data are produced to the opposing party. There are a few common formats for these load files. Along with the production will be a chain of custody showing what server(s) and people that had access. It is formally called a production. Like me as a programmer they don't typically even let me have access to the customer data. If I have to get in I certainly don't change data but they would need to list me as someone that had access. Not every produced document will be introduced as evidence. The sides have to provide each other and the court a list of documents by bates number. There is no formal chain of custody between the time it is produced and introduced as evidence that I can tell. If the document has been altered it is up to the other side to say no that document has been altered since we produced it.
So lets say documents were formally produced to law firm A. If they have trouble loading and need me to load the documents into my application would they need to tell the court and the opposing council a third party had access to the data? How can I best manage the that?
These load files come can come in jacked up. Control characters that look like they were inserted intentionally. You may agree to certain delimiters and 1/2 through a file they will change. Or delimiters conveniently in a meta field.
99% of the time I would not even need access to the actual document. I could just fix the load files with the meta data and have them load the actual documents. But sometimes you get jacked up file names and file paths. With the litigation support service firms I work with I have never had to access the actual document but I have a system guy I can tell here is what is wrong and here is what needs to be fixed.
Most of these ligation support applications are Web (HTML) based so it is hard to have a stand alone version that could be loaded on a lap top and take into court. You cannot always count on Internet access in a court room. Mine is an EXE where I can easily include the server side with the client and run it on a lap top.
Productions are almost never symmetric. If you are suing a pharmaceutical they may produce a million documents but as complainant you may only produce like 10. And the pharmaceutical will produced jacked up load files.