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On December 13 the U.S. Congress will listen to testimony regarding forthcoming e-discovery-related additions to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. This will be the first such hearing since 2006 when the rules were last updated.
The hearing, which is entitled “The Costs and Burdens of Civil Discovery,” was originally set for November 16. Rep. Tent Franks, a Republican from Arizona and the chairman of the Subcommittee on the Constitution, will preside over the hearing, which intends to bring the House up to date on the latest developments among the Federal Judiciary’s FRCP committees and on the individual senses of witnesses on which rules work, which do not, and which needed changes.
William Hubbard and Rebecca Love Kourlis were among the scheduled witnesses. Hubbard a University of Chicago Law School assistant professor, while Love Kourlis is the executive director of the University of Denver’s Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System.
During an interview with the media, both of them agreed that changes in rules are necessary, as the amount of electronically stored information increases more quickly than the e-discovery software and lawyers can keep up.
When Hubbard was asked by a reporter if he already knows the questions that is going to be asked, he said, “I don’t know what kind of questions I’m going to be asked, to tell you the truth. I don’t think it’s something that has attracted a lot of attention from Congress in the past.”
For the part of Love Kourlis, she said, “The focus of my testimony will be on the problems that discovery poses in general as they have been exacerbated in the past by electronic discovery.”