Attorney-Client Privilege

News & Analysis as of

Washington State Supreme Court Limits Attorney-Client Privilege for Healthcare-Provider Corporations

In a major decision that affects healthcare-provider corporations, the Washington State Supreme Court significantly limited attorneys’ ability to engage in privileged conversations with the provider corporation’s employed...more

Government Contracts Quarterly Update - July 2014

The Government Contracts Quarterly Update is published by BakerHostetler’s Government Contracts Practice team to inform our clients and friends of the latest developments in federal government contracting. Topics will...more

D.C. Circuit Clarified 4 Critical Factors Regarding Attorney-Client Privilege in Corporate Internal Investigations, Finding...

In a recent post, we discussed the D.C. Circuit’s consideration of the District Court’s decision in U.S. ex.rel Barko v. Halliburton Co. et al., Case No. 05-01276 (D.D.C. 2014), which provided an alarming perspective on the...more

Appeals Court Confirms that Results of Internal Investigation are Privileged

On June 27, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a decision in In re: Kellogg Brown & Root, Inc., an important ruling which confirms the application of the attorney-client...more

Week in Review

Some high profile companies, including two technology giants, made headlines this week after former employees filed lawsuits against them alleging discrimination and harassment. The case against Yahoo is likely to be...more

Focus on Tax Controversy and Litigation - July 2014

In this issue: - Supreme Court Limits Taxpayer’s Ability to Examine the IRS at a Summons Enforcement Hearing - Court Determines Tax Analysis not Protected by Attorney-Client Privilege and Work Product Doctrine...more

Preservation of Legal Privilege in Corporate Investigations – A Cross Border Comparison

A D.C. Circuit decision (In re Kellogg Brown & Root, Inc.) has confirmed privilege over employee statements during in-house investigations. Can the world take comfort? This article examines privilege in the context of...more

Counsel to the Company: A Framework for Corporate Governance

As a threshold matter, counsel must identify, and remain clear as to, the identity of its client, which may be the company or a subsidiary, the Board or Board committee, or one or more executives. The identity of the client...more

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

D.C. Circuit grants petition for mandamus and strongly reaffirms attorney-client privilege for internal investigations

The attorney-client privilege has long protected attorney-client communications made during the course of an internal investigation. Upjohn Co. v. United States, 449 U.S. 383 (1983). Of course, the privilege encourages “full...more

Unforced Errors Under Upjohn

Over thirty years ago, the Supreme Court clarified how the attorney-client privilege applies to records of internal investigations in Upjohn v. United States, 449 U.S. 383 (1981). Yet putting the principles of Upjohn into...more

D.C. Circuit Court Upholds Attorney-Client Privilege in Internal Investigations

Internal investigations play a lead role in a company’s effective ethics and compliance program. They are one of the best ways for a company to detect, thoroughly understand, and remedy situations that may violate its code...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 Court Clarifies Scope of Attorney-Client Privilege in Internal Investigations

On June 27, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued an opinion clarifying the application of the attorney-client privilege in internal investigations. ...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

Privilege Issues Are Important in Homeowner Association Construction Defect Litigation

Attorneys in Homeowners Association (“HOA”) construction defect cases must meet with the homeowners to provide litigation updates and it can sometimes be difficult to preserve the attorney-client privilege for the...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

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