Production in MasterFile takes place via a briefcase. Briefcases facilitate collaboration, collection, production, Bates numbering and archiving of documents for discovery or disclosure. The format can be paper or electronic, as individual files or as a MasterFile briefcase, in PDF or the original format. MasterFile also tracks the production and disclosure history of each production set and its documents whether they were disclosed in image, PDF or native format.

How briefcases work

Briefcases are a special type of MasterFile database designed for production in which you collect documents for production and Bates numbering. They work exactly like regular MasterFile databases but their navigator functions are specific to production. A briefcase is tied to and created from within a specific case database. A case can have any number of related briefcases for production, disclosures, archival or other purposes.

You can

  • Add and remove documents from briefcases collecting them over time, rather determining and producing an entire disclosure in one sitting.
  • Collaborate on the disclosure set within a MasterFile briefcase as you do in MasterFile.
  • Delegate the mechanics of the production process so you only have to focus on document selection and review.
  • Produce in image or PDF format, and stamp the disclosed version with Bates numbers, watermarks, headers, footers and redaction as required.
  • Delivery disclosures as paper or electronic, as individual files (in native, PDF or single/multi-page TIFF), or as a MasterFile briefcase (in PDF or the original native format). PDF disclosures can also be created as one bookmarked PDF file.
  • Maintain a catalog of the documents disclosed in each production set and the disclosure history of its individual documents and Bates numbers in the source MasterFile database.
  • Save all or selected files from the  briefcase to disk.
  • Manage several different disclosure requests for the same case can simultaneously in their own briefcases.

Native production can be interspersed with PDF or image production. Since native files can not be stamped, Bates numbers and, if applicable, exhibit numbers are added to the native filename locating it in place in the production sequence.

Documents are not converted into PDF nor OCR generated during production in briefcases; both must already exist or been generated in the MasterFile case database prior to adding those documents to the briefcase. When a PDF format production is started, the selected documents are checked to ensure a PDF file exists in each. If not, errors are reported and the erroneous profiles tagged so you can process and update the briefcase easily.

Key notes

  • Briefcases are linked to the source database from where they are created. Only documents from the source database can be added to a briefcase.
  • Being a special version of a MasterFile database, briefcases have limited functionality and views. They only store documents and use an "abridged" document profile but with the new fields as shown below (this briefcase has not yet been produced so many fields are still blank).

The abridged profile holds a doc-link to the document in the source database, and after the document has been produced, holds either production errors, if any; otherwise it holds the exhibit numbers, Bates page numbers (for PDF format productions) and other details.

  • After the briefcase has been "produced" and disclosed, production history for each document in the source MasterFile database is updated with the production date, description and Bates numbers.
  • Documents may be disclosed on paper, as electronic files (in native or PDF format) or as a MasterFile or PDF briefcase. However regardless in which format you will make the disclosure, a MasterFile briefcase is always created first, and then printed or dumped to disk if needed.

Keep briefcases in case you need to reproduce any disclosures and also, to retain an exact copy of documents as they were disclosed.

User management

Only "Full Administrators" of a MasterFile database can create briefcases for that database. Briefcases are created on the same server as the source database and can not be replicated.

  • Users designated as "Senior users" or "Administrators" in the source MasterFile database remain the same in the briefcase and are able to add or remove documents from the briefcase.
  • All other users of the source MasterFile database are made "Regular read only" users.
  • "Full Administrators" can use [R+ Administration > User Administration] in the briefcase to add or remove additional users if needed.