The main focus in this area used to be the production of some form of court room bundle, rather than in-court presentation systems such as those deployed in major inquiries like the “Bloody Sunday”, “Diana Inquest” or “Leveson” public events. The lockdown year of 2020 ( which carried into 2021) saw a significant uptake in the in-house use of tools by law firm to create what used to be called eBibles, and is now more often referred to as eBundles. The use of these tools permeated well beyond courtroom or arbitration settings as lawyers realised the efficiency and time savings to be gained from quickly and easily being able to create indexed linked bundles of electronic documents.
The main choice for courtroom support systems used to be between the more traditional approach of a set of PDF files linked together into some form of eBible and more generic “cloud based” offerings. The suppliers of the eBibles tend to be those vendors with roots in scanning, whilst the preference in the cloud based solutions seems to be a choice between products from Epiq and Opus 2.
During 2013, the Magnum product from Opus 2 gained a significant amount of “traction” in the marketplace and should be explored by anyone who ends up taking a case into the courtroom. During 2020 both Opus 2 and Epiq provided support for online “virtual” court rooms. If these become the new normal, expect other offerings to appear from alternative suppliers.
During 2014, the CaseLines product from NetMaster solutions, was adopted by the UK Supreme court, on a trial basis, for the submission of all documents to the court. Since 1st January 2016, CaseLines has been in use at all the County Courts in England and Wales, providing a true paperless office environment. In 2018, CaseLines was adopted by the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Courts to become the first court in the Middle East to introduce a new secure cloud-based technology to allow court documents to be uploaded from anywhere in the world. In Autumn 2020 Caselines was acquired by Tomson Reuters.
Arriving in late 2016/early 2017, was the XBundle software suite with two modules, Assemble and View, which is designed to compete in the area of creating and using electronic bundles.
Launched at LegalTech 2018 was Epiq’s TMX application, a collaborative platform for case preparation and presentation. TMX is a secure, flexible, and highly scalable sharing platform that gives international clients the ability to build electronic bundles quickly and easily for court hearings and arbitrations, while delivering to the U.S.-based users, a single collaborative tool with which litigation teams can prepare case documents for depositions and trial.
Key competitors in the in-house eBundling marketplace include BundleDocs, XBundle and Zylpha. Readers should use the Guide to assess which product best meets their needs.