Academic journal article Defense Counsel Journal

Industrial Defense Library

Academic journal article Defense Counsel Journal

Industrial Defense Library

Article excerpt

Reviewed by Timothy E. Kapshandy, Sidley & Austin, Chicago. Consult publisher for price (800/411-6387).

In 1987, the Industrial Defense Library was established by the members of a number of large corporations, frequently the target of toxic tort suits, who found they were often confronting the same plaintiffs' experts but had no efficient way to track and manage their prior testimony. Their goal was to provide full-text searching of prior testimony for as many of these witnesses as possible. For the first several years, the project accelerated slowly as membership fees were high and contributions of transcripts languished because of the time and expense of locating and copying old transcripts.

A number of recent advances have made the IDL a much more robust and practical resource. First, the now-regular practice of obtaining transcripts on ASCII disk has made the process of submitting transcripts nearly painless. Second, the pricing structure has changed; the hefty annual fee has been replaced with modestly higher search charges. Third, the proved value of IDL in litigation defense appears to have overcome the initial reluctance of some corporate members to share transcripts.

IDL searches are done on Westlaw as any other Westlaw search. Only IDL members have access to the database. Each transcript is introduced by a concise one-page cover sheet listing the witness, counsel, the substance at issue, and other basic information that makes browsing through search results more efficient. …

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