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Northwest OH Legal Blog

Friday, April 24, 2015

The “litigation hold” – what it is and why you must do it.

When a dispute arises, the parties to it need to take action to safeguard evidence that relates to the dispute.  The parties need to place a “hold” on their normal destruction protocols so that routine document and data destruction won’t cause the loss of evidence relevant to the dispute. 

So, for example, if paperwork relating to a dispute is set to be shredded by the warehouse where it is stored, you need to contact the warehouse and instruct them to pull out and preserve that file.  Similarly, the relevant emails of those persons involved in the dispute must also be collected and stored.

Preserving evidence related to a dispute is both good practice and required under the law.  If you have a dispute with another, you will need evidence to support your position.  If you do not preserve the evidence in your possession regarding the dispute, you may not be able to prove you should prevail.  In addition to this practical aspect, both federal and state laws require you to preserve evidence when a dispute arises. 

The rules applicable to each situation differ, so it is critical that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible.  Failing to properly preserve evidence can have drastic consequences, up to and including the awarding of a judgment against you for failing to follow the applicable rules, making the need to consult with an attorney even greater.


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With offices in Toledo and Lima, OH Allotta Farley Co., L.P.A. serves clients throughout northwest OH with various legal matters. Areas of service include Allen County, Ashland County, Auglaize County, Crawford County, Defiance County, Erie County, Fulton County, Hancock County, Hardin County, Henry County, Huron County, Lucas County, Marion County, Mercer County, Morrow County, Ottawa County, Paulding County, Putnam County, Richland County, Sandusky County, Seneca County, Van Wert County, Williams County, Wood County, Wyandot County.

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