Saving Millions in a Demanding HSR Second Request

Cleary Gottlieb and Lighthouse save millions of dollars and thousands of hours in HSRs Second Request for Fortune 500 company.

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Review and Translation Savings


Privilege Review Cost Savings


Hour of Privilege Review Saved

What They Needed

A global Fortune 500 electronics company received an HSR Second Request from the Department of Justice (DOJ), with an extremely aggressive timeline to reach substantial compliance. They engaged Cleary Gottlieb (“Cleary”), a global technology-savvy and innovative law firm with extensive experience handling challenging Second Requests. 

After Cleary led negotiations with the DOJ to reduce the scope of the investigation, the client was faced with 3.3M documents to review—a significant subset of which included CJK language documents that would require expensive and time-consuming translation. 

To further complicate matters, the DOJ and Cleary remained engaged in ongoing scope negotiations, resulting in additional data being added throughout the project. Cleary knew that conventional TAR technology was not capable of evaluating a dataset with ever-changing review parameters.

How Cleary and Lighthouse Did It

CJ Mahoney, counsel and head of the eDiscovery and litigation technology group at Cleary, has extensive experience working on complex HSR Second Requests and has pioneered a number of different analytics-driven methods to reach substantial compliance in the past. Based on prior joint success in innovating new ways to use this technology to improve privilege analytics, CJ immediately saw the potential of Lighthouse’s proprietary AI technology for this challenge. 

Together, CJ and the Lighthouse data scientists developed a unique training workflow to achieve highly precise responsive prediction results on this challenging dataset. CJ secured the DOJ’s first-ever approval of this workflow with Lighthouse’s proprietary AI technology. Immediately after approval, responsive and privilege analysis and review began simultaneously, enabled by AI technology.

For responsiveness, the teams utilized an active learning TAR workflow wherein subject matter experts reviewed a control set of randomly selected documents. After only a few training rounds, the system reached stability and began scoring the remaining dataset for responsiveness.

A privilege classifier was built based on 20K previously confirmed privilege calls and applied to score all documents in the privilege workspace. The teams used a combination of the analytic results and privilege terms to identify potential privileged documents. All documents within this set that were scored as “highly likely to be privileged” were immediately routed to reviewers for review and privilege logging. Conversely, documents scored as “unlikely to be privileged” were removed from privilege review after Cleary’s attorneys verified the accuracy of the results using a random sample. Further, the teams used the privilege classifier to identify additional privilege documents that had not hit on privilege terms.

As the timeline for substantial compliance approached, negotiations with DOJ regarding relevant timeframes and custodians continued, resulting in the near-constant addition and removal of documents from the dataset. The Lighthouse and Cleary teams managed the ever-changing dataset with ease using the Lighthouse technology and workflow developed by the teams.

The Results

Using a specialized TAR workflow leveraging advanced AI, the teams delivered highly accurate responsive classification, resulting in more than 500K (or more than 40%) fewer documents requiring further review and production to the DOJ, when compared to legacy TAR tools. 

By creating a smaller volume of documents requiring production, the amount of privilege and foreign language review was also lessened. For example, 120K fewer foreign language documents were included in the final responsive set compared to legacy TAR tool results. This reduction of review and translation saved approximately $1M alone. For the client, the smaller responsive set meant faster production turnaround times, lower overall costs, and risk mitigation through the decreased chance for inadvertent production of non-responsive documents. 

The Lighthouse and Cleary partnership resulted in the removal of 200K documents from privilege review beyond what could have been possible through conventional methods, leading to cost savings of $1.2M and time savings of 8K review hours. The team further mitigated risk to the client by identifying privilege documents that did not hit on standard privilege terms. 

The Cleary and Lighthouse partnership resulted in substantial compliance with the HSR Second Request, increased risk mitigation,  faster document review, and remarkable savings for the client.