Witness Statements: Attorney Work Product?

A recent California Court of Appeals case, Coito v. Superior Court of Stanislaus County, __ Cal. App. 4th __ (March 4, 2010), highlights an important discrepancy between state and federal protection of attorney work product as it applies to witness statements. While the federal rules and case law support a qualified privilege with regard to such statements (requiring a showing of substantial need to permit discovery), the law applicable in state courts may differ. The court in Coito, as further discussed below, followed a line of California cases that place witness statements outside of the attorney work product doctrine.

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Published In: Civil Procedure Updates, Conflict of Laws Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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