Work Product Privilege

News & Analysis as of

Do Witness Interview Memoranda Deserve Opinion or Merely Fact Work Product Protection?: Part II

Last week's Privilege Point discussed Lance Armstrong's unsuccessful attempt to discover witness interview memoranda government agents prepared during their civil investigation of Armstrong's misdeeds. United States ex rel....more

Do Witness Interview Memoranda Deserve Opinion or Merely Fact Work Product Protection?: Part I

Unlike the absolute attorney-client privilege, the work product doctrine offers two possible levels of protection. Lawyers' (and other client representatives') opinions deserve absolute or nearly absolute protection in most...more

Insurer Not Required To Produce Coverage Memoranda Or Reinsurance Information In Discovery

A federal district court in New York has held that the attorney-client and work-product privileges apply to coverage memoranda sought by an insured from AIG Specialty Insurance in an ongoing coverage and bad faith litigation...more

From ‘Akzo’ to ‘Loi Macron’: There is still no Legal Privilege for In-House Lawyers in France

A significant difference between the French and U.S. and UK legal systems is in the understanding of legal privilege: it does not exist for in-house counsel in France....more

Letter From America: Internal investigations – a stark reminder of the dangers of failing to implement strict protocols from the...

A recent ruling in long-running civil litigation against the Bank of China (“BOC”) in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York provides a stark reminder of the dangers of failing to develop and...more

District court limits application of privilege in internal investigations

The Southern District of New York offered a strong rebuke to defendant Bank of China (BOC) in a discovery dispute, finding that documents created as part of an internal investigation into potential terrorist activities of a...more

Court Of Chancery Upholds Privilege For Funding Agreement

Applying the Delaware “because of” test to determine what is covered by the work product privilege, this decision prohibits discovery of the funding agreement between a litigation funding firm and one of the parties to the...more

Game Changer? The S.D.N.Y. Endorses a Company-Friendly Privilege Standard

In In re General Motors LLC Ignition Switch Litigation, No. 14-MD-2543 (JMF), 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 5199, at *220 (S.D.N.Y. Jan. 15, 2015), Judge Furman upheld General Motors' claim of privilege and work product protection...more

2014 E-Discovery Year in Review - "Courts continued in 2014 to endorse the use of technology to improve the efficiency and...

2014 demonstrated that management and discovery of electronic information continues to be a challenging issue in litigation. A review of 2014 court decisions also underscores the importance of litigation hold notices,...more

Court Orders Production of Work Product Documents under Crime-Fraud Exception to Attorney-Client Privilege Where Defendants Had...

In an earlier filed decision, the district court had previously found that Escort and its defense counsel had knowingly misled the plaintiff, Fleming, which warranted a sanction of attorney fees. As explained by the district...more

Illinois Supreme Court Debates Scope of Accountant-Client Privilege in Will Contests

Last week, the Illinois Supreme Court heard oral argument in Brunton v. Kruger.  Brunton involves the scope of the accountant-client privilege – specifically, what happens to that privilege after the client dies, and how the...more

The Barko v. KBR Privilege Battle Continues

A high-profile qui tam suit against Kellogg, Brown & Root and Halliburton continues to generate important case law relating to the scope of attorney-client privilege and work product protection given to internal...more

Nevada Lawyers Beware: Don’t Use Privileged Documents To Prep Your Client To Testify

Twice this year, the Nevada Supreme Court ruled that a party may be required to produce for inspection an otherwise privileged document used to refresh a witness’s recollection prior to or during the witness’s testimony at a...more

Safeguard Your Litigation Privileges When Working With Insurance Brokers On Complex Insurance Claims

Businesses facing catastrophic losses, whether as a result of an accident or a natural disaster, or due to mass tort claims, frequently will engage both their insurance broker and legal counsel to identify and pursue...more

District Court Precludes Deposition of In-House Counsel Who Acted as Part of Trial Team Even Though Counsel Had Relevant,...

After plaintiff, McAirlaids, requested the deposition of one of Kimberly-Clark's ("K-C") in-house litigation counsel, K-C filed a motion for a protective order pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(c) to preclude the deposition of...more

PTAB Grants Rare IPR “Motion to Compel”

Many parties to inter partes review proceedings continue to have their guns pointed directly at their feet, taking erroneous actions that are consistently called out by the PTAB. In the midst of one such error, we explore the...more

District Court Grants Motion to Compel Internal Counsel Communications of Plaintiff That Did Not Pertain to Litigation

Dell moved to compel the production of certain internal counsel communications at the plaintiff, MLR. MLR had refused to produce the documents, claiming work product protection. As explained by the district court,...more

Is It Still Privileged? An Insurer’s Disclosure Of Information To Its Reinsurers And Brokers Waives Privilege … Sometimes.

A federal district court recently held that an insurer waived any claim of attorney-client or work product privilege when it disclosed otherwise potentially privileged information to its reinsurers and to its broker. In doing...more

Legal Briefs: A Periodic Summary of Judicial Decisions Affecting Accounting and Financial Services Professionals - October 2014

The New Jersey District Court recently ruled that an economic damages expert retained by plaintiffs’ counsel in a class action was not entitled to any further compensation for his work. The facts in Rothstein v. Harstad...more

The Interrogatory That Does Not Warrant An Objection Based On Privilege

There was enough worth talking about in Judge Bledsoe's opinion in National Financial Partners Corp. v. Ray, 2014 NCBC 49, which I posted about yesterday, to warrant a second post....more

Commercial Restructuring & Bankruptcy Alert - October 2014

In this issue: - Judge Says That Stockton, California Can Cut Pension Obligations - Third-Party Releases – Better Make Sure They Are Adequately Disclosed - Lawyers Who Sign Proofs of Claims for Clients...more

Legal Alert: The Tax Court Approves the Use of Predictive Coding

On September 17, the U.S. Tax Court, in Dynamo Holdings LP v. Commissioner, 143 T.C. No. 9 (Sept. 17, 2014), held that a taxpayer could use predictive coding, over the objection of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to...more

Iowa Decision Underscores the Danger of Sharing Privileged Material with Reinsurers

Last month, a federal court in Iowa handed down a decision holding that neither work product nor attorney-client nor the common interest doctrine shield legal advice and analysis from production in discovery once it has been...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Recognizes Broad Common Interest Privilege

On July 21, 2014, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued its opinion in O'Boyle v. Borough of Longport, 94 A.3d 299 (N.J. 2014), adopting a broad application of the common interest doctrine for communications covered by both the...more

Court Rejects Claims Of Privilege, Work Product, And The Common Interest Doctrine To Reinsurance Information

In a discovery dispute between insurer Progressive and the FDIC, as receiver of the insured bank, a federal district court has rejected all claims of attorney-client privilege and work product protection to reinsurance...more

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