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The case law advises us that preservation should begin once litigation is ''reasonably anticipated.''
Timing: When litigation can be ''reasonably anticipated'' is a bit of an amorphous common-sense standard. The implementation of the litigation hold memorandum should be contemplated by the records management policy and facilitated by it where possible. For example, the records management policy can include a mechanism for the institution of the legal hold to suspend potentially relevant documents from the routine destruction practices of the organization, both in the ordinary course of business and within the records storage process. The preservation of the data is of paramount importance, and a finely tuned records management policy should enable the quick and efficient suspension of information destruction.
!!Warning: Failure to institute the legal hold and failure to timely comply with it, may lead to accusations of the spoliation of evidence and attendant sanctions, including adverse inferences or loss of claims or defenses. Moreover, there must be follow up and periodic reminders to the affected custodians that the data must continue to be preserved.
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