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I believe Allan has been doing something like this for quite a while, and I'm starting to think I have to go this route too. Seems like part of the plan would be to stop vendors from sending paper in the first place, have them send PDF files.
I've had their desktop scanner for a few years now, and it works great, I don't use their filing system, but pretty much anything important that comes across my desk gets scanned into my computer's filing system, which is way more organized and easier to use than my filing cabintets ever were.
The actual paper gets tossed in a file box, labeled with the year....not organized at all, but I know January's on the bottom! If I ever need the paper, it'll take some digging, but it won't be too bad. On the other hand, finding something in my computer files is a snap.
I suppose the next task would be to get into OCR and all of that, but, so long as I'm a one man show, that'd probably be overkill.
Patterson Builders-Remodelers, LLC
19112 Jericho Dr.
Gaithersburg, MD 20879
There's really nothing special about their scanners - it's all about their software. "NeatWorks" is proprietary, but the last I knew it did actually did store stuff as .PDFs - or at least had the option to do that .
If you do try the software (which you can buy as a stand-alone to use with many other scanners... it's $80 to download) - I would most definitely be saving everything to .PDF regardless. The worst thing you can do is get all your documentation stuck in some proprietary format that might not be around in a few years. Unless you plan on keeping the paper kicking around - and doing that sort of defeats the purpose.
And FWIW - Fujitsu is making a very similar scanner - my guess is they're either OEMing them for NeatDesk or have simply copied the design. You can scan directly to either Evernote - or SharePoint.
((Planning + Process) x Technology) = SUCCESS!
The best evidence rule provides that, where a writing is offered in evidence, a copy or other secondary evidence of its content will not be received in place of the original document unless an adequate explanation is offered for the absence of the original. Evid. Code § 1500 et seq.; Fed. Rules Evid. 1002. In California, testimonial and other secondary evidence of the document's content is also generally forbidden. Evid. Code §§ 1500, 1508.
Accordingly, both California law and the federal rules allow the use of mechanically produced duplicates unless a party has raised a genuine question about the accuracy of the copy or can show that its use would be unfair. Evid. Code §§ 1500 et seq.; Fed. Rules Evid. 1003. However, there is always a danger of a party questioning a document, so it is important to remember that, unless you have a stipulation to the contrary, or your document fits one of the exceptions listed in the statute, you must be ready to produce originals of any documents involved in your case or to produce evidence of why you can't.¹