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Forensic document examiners apply analytical techniques and allied sciences to certain questions regarding documents. Examination of documents might include the difference in one person's handwriting, the printer or typewriter used to create a document (whether there were two different printers or typewriters used, suggesting an alteration of the document), different inks, different paper within the same document, and other evidence that could displace the document's authenticity.
Attorneys might wish to use forensic document examiners if they think that one or more documents have been forged or altered in some form. The outcome of a case could hinge on whether a document is authentic or not.
Documents requested and supplied in discovery are reviewed for content. Many documents are in electronic form, which makes it more difficult to determine if a document is authentic. Documents are reviewed prior to being sent as a response to discovery requests to ensure that no confidential or otherwise privileged documents are provided to opposing counsel. Documents received pursuant to a discovery request are also reviewed for content.