New innovators: Prime Legal Discovery
Supplying legal eagles on a contract basis to assist with document review, Discovery and eDiscovery
Dan Fox: is anticipating a brisk rise in demand
Good timing can really help a young company to grow and Dan Fox and Richard Greene, founders of legal outsourcing company Prime Legal Discovery, are anticipating a brisk rise in demand for their service by those involved in the upcoming banking inquiry.
Fox and Greene are barristers with considerable experience in legal document review. They saw at first hand how organisations struggle to process mounds of litigation-related data and this sparked the idea for their business, which supplies legal eagles on a contract basis to assist with document review, Discovery and eDiscovery.
“Having learnt our craft working for other people we saw an opportunity to set up our own business providing highly qualified people to law firms and other organisations that would allow them to scale back on their legal spend and enhance their productivity,” says Dan Fox. “This model has been employed very successfully in the US and UK but we are the first to company of our kind in the Republic of Ireland. Discovery is a billion dollar market and it is growing fast due to the rise in litigation and the growing volume of content and data that is now potentially relevant to litigation. Our aim is to allow our clients save significantly on these costs.”
Initially the company worked mainly with law firms, but an increasing amount of its business is now coming from industry and other sectors. The company has a network of over 500 barristers and solicitors to tap into and as Fox points out, the company’s business model travels well.
“We have just opened an office in London and are providing managed staffing solutions to large scale English law firms, financial institutions, and other organisations there. In addition we have also carried out projects in Brussels, Luxembourg and the Middle East,” he says.
“With the rise in electronic data and the mobile phone industry constantly creating new ways to store and communicate information, documentation that might be deemed relevant for the purposes of litigation is increasing,” he adds. “As a result Discovery has become one of the most time-consuming, resource-demanding and costly parts of the litigation process. The work itself can be quite routine but it is labour and time intensive as it often involves the review of extensive documentation. In some cases Discovery can amount to 60 per cent of the costs associated with the litigation process. This rise in costs is directly linked to the rise in electronic data,” Fox says.
Prime Legal Discovery is based in Dublin and employs seven people. The company received development support from the Dún Laoghaire Rathdown Enterprise Office earlier this year and in addition to providing personnel to work on document review and Discovery, it also sources lawyers to work on niche areas of the law for its industry clients. Fox says most of its business to date has come from referrals and personal recommendations.
“We can carry out this work very cost effectively as our overheads are extremely low,” Fox says. “In addition outsourcing their discovery and document review work to us allows legal firms to focus on core legal competencies and dramatically reduce the costs associated with being involved in litigation. We look after the staffing and management associated with the review teams which takes the administrative burden away from organisations and dramatically lowers their costs whilst enhancing their productivity when they become embroiled in litigation.”
Prime Legal Discovery has already been called on to provide bespoke review teams to a number of parties involved in the upcoming banking inquiry. “Our service will play a large role in keeping legal costs to a minimum throughout this process,” Fox says.
– OLIVE KEOGH