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Ask socrateaser Your Own Question
socrateaser
socrateaser, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 38801
Experience:  Attorney and Real Estate Broker -- Retired (mostly)
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"To socrateaser" What exactly does that mean, attorney client

Resolved Question:

"To socrateaser" What exactly does that mean, attorney client privilege, under what conditions is it formed, when can it be revoked/not to be applied?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.
The attorney-client privilege attached when an objectively reasonable person would believe that he or she is speaking with an attorney in his or her professional capacity. The condition precedent to the privilege is that an attorney-client relationship is formed, i.e., a contract whereby the attorney agrees to provide legal services to the client.

The privilege can attach even where the attorney ultimately rejects the person as a client, if the initial contact is under circumstances where a reasonable person would believe that they were attempting to engage the attorney in his or her professional capacity.

The privilege is lost where the client communicates in circumstances where he/she has no reasonable expectation of privacy, where the client expressly waives the privilege, or where a court grants the client immunity from criminal prosecution if he/she testifies in circumstances where such testimony may tend to incriminate (i.e., in court as a witness).

Hope this helps.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Would one assume that the attorney client communcation would be waived in the following situations?

 

If the confidential communications are disclosed to third parties.

Disclosure to prevent a crime, tort, or fraud

Lawyers may disclose confidential information relating to the retainer where they are reasonably seeking to collect payment for services rendered.

Disclosure of information that is not confidential (in the public venue)

Disclosure for the purpose of probate

Privilege related to tax practice

Potentially in cases that involve federal courts

Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.

Would one assume that the attorney client communication would be waived in the following situations?

If the confidential communications are disclosed to third parties.

 

A: Waived, if disclosed by client. If disclosed by attorney without consent -- probable disbarment, and evidence inadmissible.


Disclosure to prevent a crime, tort, or fraud

 

A: No privilege attaches as to intended future crime -- attorney is free to disclose. Future tort or fraud disclosure varies substantially by jurisdiction.

 

Lawyers may disclose confidential information relating to the retainer where they are reasonably seeking to collect payment for services rendered.

 

A: No privilege where dispute is between attorney and client, and matters disclosed are material to the dispute.


Disclosure of information that is not confidential (in the public venue)

 

A: Attorney owes a separate duty of confidentiality, concerning knowledge surrounding client's circumstances. However, this is not part of the privilege, so while disclosure may subject attorney to discipline or malpractice action, the disclosure cannot be excluded from evidence.

Disclosure for the purpose of probate

 

A: Under the statutory attorney-client privilege, just as under the common law, an executor may waive the attorney-client privilege of his or her decedent.  NY CPLR 4503. See also, Cal. Evid. Code 953(c).


Privilege related to tax practice

 

A: No special exception. However, a tax return, once filed is not within the scope of privilege, though Internal Revenue Code makes disclosure unlawful, except in specific circumstances. Note: In California, tax returns and any information contained there in are undiscoverable/privileged, except in family law actions.


Hope this helps.

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