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New York’s First Department Adopts Federal E-discovery Standard

On January 31, 2012 decision, the Appellate Division, First Department, adopted the federal Zubulake standard for spoliation of electronic evidence in Voom H.D. Holdings v. EchoStar Satellite, LLC, 600292/08.  Voom is the first New York state appellate decision to apply the standard for spoliation of electronic evidence set forth in Southern District Judge Shira Scheindlin’s decision in Zubulake v. UBS Warburg, LLC, 220 FRD 212.  Brendan Pierson wrote an article about the case in the New York Law Journal on February 1, 2012.

We have discussed the heightened sensitivity to E-discovery spoliation in state courts in this space previously.  See blog post titled, “New E-discovery ‘Best Practices’”, (January 5, 2012). 

The First Department’s adoption of Zubulake’s reasoning has far reaching consequences in commercial litigation in state court.  It potentially opens the floodgates to all of the post-Zubulake jurisprudence that has been percolating in federal courts over the past several years.  I predict that New York appellate courts will see a number of interlocutory discovery appeals on E-discovery in coming months.