Monday, September 18, 2023

Just Because A Document is in the Cloud Doesn't Make it Accessible in Discovery

In the case of Edenfield v. ECM Energy Services, Inc., No. 999 MDA 2022 (Pa. Super. Aug. 1, 2023 Bowes, J., Lazarus, J., and Stevens, P.J.E.) (Op. by Bowes, J.), the Pennsylvania Superior Court reviewed a notable discovery issue and concluded that, despite the accessibility of electronic records stored by a party on the so-called cloud, state courts cannot order companies to compel documents stored on the cloud unless those companies have a sufficient link to Pennsylvania.

In this Opinion, the Pennsylvania Superior Court was presented with the question of whether electronic records stored in the cloud, without an established physical location in Pennsylvania, were located within Pennsylvania for purposes of Title 15 solely by virtue of being theoretically accessible from Pennsylvania.

In ruling that the documents did not have to be produced, the Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld a decision out of the Lycoming County Court of Common Pleas in which that court had denied a Petition to Compel Inspection of Corporate Books and Records of a Party. 

The Superior Court noted that, to rule otherwise, would permit the courts to compel any business utilizing Quick Books or similar services to have to produce records in Pennsylvania despite the fact that there was no other connection to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Superior Court stated that such a result was not contemplated by the law at issue.

Anyone wishing to review a copy of this decision may click this LINK.

Source: Article: “Despite Accessibility, Storing Corporate Records in the Cloud Does not Create Pa. Jurisdiction, Superior Court Rules.” By: Riley Brennan. Pennsylvania Law Weekly (Aug. 2, 2023).

Source of image:  Photo by Miguel Pedroso on

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