Background on the Need to Scan Documents
Whether before MSPB, EEOC, FLRA, OSC, DOL, negotiated grievances, or arbitration cases, the litigation in these categories all have one thing in common- dealing with extensive documentary evidence; often mountains of scanning documents. Any employee serious about litigating their case will always seek to obtain documentary evidence and never believe they have enough. Often, litigants become buried under a mountain of evidentiary documents in connection with actions proposed by agencies such as removal or security clearance revocations. At this point in time we are seeing a transition to all electronic documentation. However, many litigants will continue to deal with a mix of electronic and hardcopy documents. For example, currently, approximately eighty percent of the EEO Reports of Investigation (ROI) we encounter are electronic (delivered by e-mail of DVD) and the remaining are delivered as hardcopy. It is perhaps important to note that a single ROI can be thousands of pages.
What We Need
Our consultants rely significantly on primary source documentation to provide accurate analysis and develop actionable recommendations and strategies for our clients. Scanning documents that are in hardcopy form is critical. While clients can provide us extensive detailed verbal or written first person narratives, we always look to, and rely upon, primary source documentation to develop accurate actionable analysis, recommendations, and litigation strategies. Case evidence should be developed on the “front end” of the case rather than at the hearing stage.
Often new clients are in a rush and facing tight deadlines. Therefore, the timely transmission of associated case documents to us is critical concerning deadlines. This is the most efficient manner for us to receive this documentation.
Post Pandemic Update (April 17, 2021)
Since the original publication of this article, the Pandemic forced lingering federal agencies to embrace technology far ahead of already anticipated timelines. As a result, it is now increasingly rare federal employees engaged in administrative litigation encounter paper documents. All federal agencies are now delivering documents via Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Files. We have not encountered an EEO paper based Report of Investigation in at least six months.
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