News & Analysis as of

D.C. Circuit Vacates Barko Ruling on Scope of Privilege in Internal Investigations

On June 27, 2014, the D.C. Circuit vacated the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia’s hotly-debated opinion in United States ex rel. Barko v. Halliburton Co., making it clear that internal investigation...more

A Recent D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Decision Calms Employer Fears that Internal Investigations May Not Be Privileged and Lays...

A recent decision from the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, one of the most important courts in the nation, reaffirmed that a company’s internal investigations—if structured properly—are protected from disclosure in litigation...more

Attorney-Client Privilege Protects Against Production of Internal Investigations of Fraud

If you have been worrying about a potential issue related to an audit or False Claims Act (FCA) complaint, but have been nervous to proceed with an internal investigation in case those results should come back damning and...more

Privilege Upheld for Internal Investigation Preceding False Claims Act Litigation

The D.C. Circuit recently issued an important decision upholding the attorney-client privilege to protect corporate internal investigations. In re: Kellogg Brown & Root, No. 14-5055, 2014 BL 180217 (D.C. Cir. June 27, 2014). ...more

D.C. Circuit Broadly Applies Attorney-Client Privilege to Internal Investigations

The attorney-client privilege broadly applies to communications made for the purpose of obtaining or providing legal advice. However, what if an internal investigation has multiple purposes, some of which are to provide legal...more

D.C. Circuit Overturns Lower Court Ruling and Reaffirms the Ability of In-House Counsel to Conduct Internal Investigations

In a significant decision issued last week reaffirming the importance of the attorney-client privilege in connection with internal investigations, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit reversed a lower court ruling...more

D.C. Circuit Protects Attorney-Client Privilege in Internal Corporate Investigations

The appellate court clarifies that internal corporate investigations are subject to the attorney-client privilege where one of the significant purposes of the investigation is to secure legal advice for the company....more

Supreme Court to Decide Important False Claims Act Statute of Limitations and Jurisdictional Bar Issues

On July 1, 2014, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in Kellogg Brown & Root Services, Inc., et al. v. United States ex rel. Carter (No. 12-1497), a case involving two issues that have been central to recent False Claims Act...more

DC Circuit Rejects Narrow View Of Attorney-Client Privilege In Internal Company Investigations

On June 27, 2014, the D.C. Circuit granted Kellogg Brown & Root’s (“KBR’s”) petition for a writ of mandamus and vacated a federal district court order requiring KBR to produce 89 documents related to an internal...more

Upjohn Upheld: D.C. Circuit Re-Affirms Privilege Protections for Multi-Purpose Internal Investigations

In one of the most important decisions of the year for corporate legal departments, on June 27, the D.C. Circuit held that a company’s internal investigation documents were protected by the attorney-client privilege where...more

DC Circuit Strongly Reaffirms the Applicability of the Attorney-Client Privilege to Internal Compliance Investigations

Especially in the District of Columbia Circuit, the home base for many fraud cases in which the government is opposed to health care providers and defense contractors, there had been considerable doubt that the...more

Common Sense Prevails as D.C. Circuit Applies Upjohn in Vacating District Court Order to Produce Investigation Reports

Government contractors and other companies subject to internal investigation requirements won some relief from the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit on June 26 with a decision that firmly reiterated that...more

D.C. Circuit Upholds Attorney-Client Privilege in Internal Investigations - Privilege Protections Triggered When a Significant...

Corporate counsel can rest a little easier now. In a widely anticipated decision issued June 27, 2014, In re Kellogg Brown & Root, Inc., the D.C. Circuit granted a writ of mandamus and vacated a district court order requiring...more

Internal Investigations Remain Internal – Attorney Client Privilege Protected by D.C. Circuit

On June 27, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued an important, unanimous decision upholding the assertion of attorney-client privilege for an internal investigation. The decision is especially...more

D.C. Circuit Bolsters Attorney-Client Privilege in Internal Investigations

You may remember that in March, the U.S. District Court in D.C. threw the corporate world into a bit of a tizzy with a ruling that documents related to an internal investigation at Kellogg Brown & Root were not privileged and...more

D.C. Appeals Court Upholds Privilege For Internal Investigation Preceding False Claims Act Litigation

The KBR decision should not be interpreted as a sign that internal investigations of regulatory compliance are privileged per se. Companies should keep the following principles in mind when conducting any internal...more

Keeping Legal Advice In-House: Protecting the Attorney-Client Privilege

Given that laboratories operate in a heavily regulated environment, the advice of legal counsel is integral to ensuring compliance with the many laws and regulations that govern the laboratory industry. Luckily the...more

Four Tips for Responding to a Civil Investigative Demand: A Report from the Trenches

Simply being served with a Civil Investigative Demand (CID) means enormous financial strain and reputational risk for some companies. On top of that, in this heightened regulatory environment, federal agencies seem to be...more

Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Qui Tam Case Based on Attorney’s Use of Confidential Information

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently affirmed the decision of the District Court for the Southern District of New York to disqualify Fair Laboratory Practices Associates (FLPA) from its qui tam suit against...more

Hospital Ordered to Produce Privileged Documents Under the Crime-Fraud Exception

A magistrate judge in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida recently ordered a hospital defendant in a False Claims Act (FCA) case to turn over two prime documents to the U.S. Department of Justice and...more

Kinetic Moves To Disqualify Counsel In False Claims Act Qui Tam Action For Improper Use Of Contractor’s Privileged Documents

Arguing that relators’ counsel has retained and used, without authority, more than 800 of its attorney-client privileged and work product documents, Kinetic Concepts, Inc. (“KCI”) has asked the District Court for the Central...more

Retaliation and Whistleblower Claims by In-House Counsel

In This Issue: - Whistleblower protections and in-House Counsel - Sarbanes-oxley - The Dodd-Frank Act - The False Claims Act - Common Law Wrongful Discharge Claims - The Ethical...more

Sending the Privilege Away: Attorney-Client E-Mails in the Corporate Setting

In a pending False Claims Act (“FCA”) case involving allegations of noncompliance with the federal physician self-referral law (the “Stark Law”), 42 U.S.C. § 1395nn, the United States District Court for the Middle District of...more

Recent Federal False Claims Act Decision Undermines Attorney-Client Privilege over Certain In-House Counsel Emails

A federal magistrate judge's recent decision in United States ex rel. Baklid-Kunz v. Halifax Hospital Medical Center, a Civil False Claims Act (“FCA”) case pending in the United States District Court for the Middle District...more

False Claims Act Case Limits Attorney-Client Privilege for In-House Counsel

Health care organizations should take careful note of a recent decision from a Florida federal district court that sharply limited the defendant hospital’s ability to shield what it considered to be attorney-client...more

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