March 5, 2021

Volume XI, Number 64

Martha J. Dawson

Martha Dawson, a partner in K&L Gates’ Seattle office, has more than 35 years of experience helping clients in commercial and complex litigation, with a particular focus since 1997 on electronic discovery and trial support. Early in her career, her cases were typically document (paper) intensive. As a trial attorney, Martha understood the important role that document requests, proper document production, and the management of documents played in the course of litigation and trial. Technology and sound business processes in managing documents from preservation to trial became an early and important part of her practice.

Recognizing the need for more effective client solutions as documents turned predominately from paper to electronic, K&L Gates formed its unique practice group, e-discovery analysis and technology (e-DAT), in 1997. Today, e-DAT is comprised of more than 100 lawyer and non-lawyer professionals dedicated to records management, litigation readiness, all aspects of document review (from collection to processing to final production) and litigation and trial support. e-DAT uses systematic processes and advanced technology to provide efficient document review legal services, particularly with respect to electronic documents. These services have been extensively utilized in nationally prominent complex litigation, government investigations and a range of internal private investigations.

The American Lawyer named Martha one of its six “most important e-discovery trailblazers” in the July 2013 issue devoted to the “Top 50 Legal Innovators of the Last 50 Years.” The article cited in particular, “Dawson saw it all coming – not just how e-discovery was going to change the practice of law, but how it could also change the business of law. Before most lawyers were using email, she was tweaking – and sometimes inventing – processes to ensure that her firm was getting both sides of the equation right.”

As founding partner of the e-DAT practice group, Martha focuses on the legal issues of electronic discovery, records management and litigation/trial support. She regularly counsels clients regarding litigation readiness, records preservation and legal holds, collection issues, and all manner of discovery related issues. Martha serves as both Special and National e-Discovery Counsel to clients working with their trial counsel of choice. Reasonable, responsible and defensible solutions to often challenging discovery issues require the in-depth knowledge and legal experience that she brings to bear on each matter.

An active participant in discussions regarding the 2006 and 2015 amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Martha serves as the co-chair to the Local Rules Committee for the Western District of Washington Federal Bar Association, where she represents the bar in providing recommendations to the court on proposed amendments to the local rules. She is a frequent speaker and author on electronic discovery issues.


Articles in the National Law Review database by Martha J. Dawson