Legal Translation Service for e-Discovery

Legal Translation Services for e-Discovery

Legal translation services play an important role in e-Discovery. In the case Accessdata Corp. v. ALSTE Tech. GMBH, 2010 WL 3184777 (D. Utah Jan. 21, 2010), plaintiff’s (a U.S. company) motion to compel a German company to produce responsive third-party personal data – despite their objections that such a demand was in violation of German law – was granted by the court. The plaintiff’s motion to compel the re-reproduction of previously produced electronic discovery was also granted as the defendant’s original production failed to meet the requirements of Fed. R. Civ. P. 34.


The Court based its decision on its finding that Defendant “failed to demonstrate the verity of its assertion” that the production was in violation of German law by failing to cite any particular provisions of the law.

Further, the Court found on its own that the German Data Protection Act allowed for such transfers of third-party information upon the satisfaction of such conditions as consent of the third-party. Finally, even if such productions were prohibited under German law, the U.S. Supreme Court has held that “such blocking statutes do not deprive an American court of the power to order a party subject to its jurisdictions to produce evidence even though the act of production may violate that statute.”

In consideration of these rulings, it is essential that all references to foreign statutes be supported by foreign language translations of cited law. However, per the decision of the Supreme Court, even this may not be enough to block a request for discovery – which in turn makes the issue of jurisdiction more interesting.

Up Next: Foreign Language Translation and Foreign Income and Taxes: Section 911