Litigation coding or legal coding, involves the creation of keyword data or summary from a document. The process is particularly required in the legal profession for creating document databases or quick-search index for use in litigation, hence the name “litigation coding”.
OCR Vital for Coding
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) is one of the most important aspects of legal coding. OCR can enable massive volumes of data in legal documents to be coded. While regular scanning of text documents only enables saving the text file as an image that cannot be textually edited, OCR enables scanning of the document and direct transfer to MS Word or other such word processing software for editing.
Clients Served by Legal Coding Services
Litigation coding services serve the needs of law firms, attorneys and other legal professionals. Data management is part of the services offered since the data needs to be customized to suit the preferences of the client. This is where legal document conversion comes in. The information in the database must then be indexed and coded for quick retrieval whenever necessary. Accuracy and speed are extremely important for such services since the litigation lawyer works within laws which ensure his ability to practice litigation effectively and facilitate his protection.
Professionals in the legal field have got to keep abreast with changes and new technological developments. Electronic evidence needs to be collected, and could present the crucial evidence in a case. Therefore, the data must be coded and mere data extraction would not suffice. Attorneys usually decide the kind of file format they’d like the evidences to be presented in. E-discovery tools also help in annotation and classification of documents.
Legal document encoding involves the establishment of subjective and objective document coding carried out by coders. Encoding the documents to the database systems makes the information more accessible to the attorneys. The type of information that is encoded also keeps changing. This is usually specified by the client attorney and is dependent on the kind of case handled.
Onsite and offsite coding services are offered by business / legal services outsourcing companies. The coders are typically those possessing accuracy and speed in typing and excellent comprehension, proofreading and writing skills. Some are professionals with previous experience, while others are provided training by the legal coding company.
Why Outsourcing Works
Cost-effective litigation is integral to the functioning of an attorney or law firm, since it is vital for various legal processes and required for future research as well. Most law firms and corporate organizations look for outsourcing litigation coding in order to save costs, ensure efficiency of the coding, and to streamline their functioning. This ensures flawless data transfer on account of the creation of a database after which the records are coded and indexed to the specification demanded.
Rates for the task are generally competitive which makes the entire process cost-effective since law firms or attorneys would not have to set apart staff or resources, or train their employees for this. They could focus on the business end of the case, which increases their chances of success. As security protocols are in place at the legal process outsourcing companies, the data is also safe from prying eyes.