The Scope and Limitations of Attorney-Client Confidentiality | Huntersure

The Scope and Limitations of Attorney-Client Confidentiality

Posted on: July 11, 2019 by Huntersure LLC.

In any legal case, clients have every right to worry about their sensitive information being leaked or exposed. Whether it’s a business-related legal matter or personal, the client is putting their faith in the hands of their attorney or representation to keep their information safe.

By its very nature, the attorney-client relationship allows an invaluable right to have communications of any kind, be it a text message, email, phone conversation, or in-person, protected from disclosure to a third party. But how far can the attorney-client privilege go?

Read on to learn more about attorney-client privilege and just how far it can be stretched in a legal case.

General Client Privilege Outline

In general, the attorney-client privilege applies when an actual or potential client communicates with an attorney regarding their legal advice, or when the lawyer is acting in a professional capacity, or when the client intended the communications to be private and acted so accordingly.

When this relationship is implemented, lawyers cannot reveal oral or written communications with clients that they deem to be kept private and privileged. Anyone outside the legal matter cannot legally hear about these communications in any way. The client, however, can waive this privilege if they want to, but a lawyer cannot.

This relationship stays in effect even far after the relationship ends. In essence, the lawyer is legally bound to never divulge any bit of information related to a case without the client’s permission.

Duty of Confidentiality, Limitations, and Expectations

The relationship is a rule of evidence under the law. It prevents lawyers from testifying about their clients’ statements. Lawyers also owe their clients a duty of confidentiality, which prevents attorneys from discussing information related to a case even in the most informal of ways.

Communications between lawyers and their clients are protected by privilege only if the circumstances lend themselves to being confidential. Clients expect secrecy and trust with their attorney. If a lawyer breaks this trust or any element of the relationship, they are most assuredly on the hook for claims and legal issues of their own.

If this is the case, lawyers should be operating with their own kind of safety net. This can be found in lawyer professional liability, a kind of protection that provides financial backup for lawyers to pay for litigation. Even if a lawyer is found to be innocent, the cost of a lawsuit against them can be extremely expensive and even tarnish their reputation in the legal field, which can have long-term professional problems.

About Huntersure

At Huntersure, we specialize in providing quality professional liability solutions to accounting professionals. Our Accountant Liability Insurance program provides coverage for accountants, auditors, bookkeepers, and tax preparers, so no matter where your clients lie in the industry they can have the coverage they need to protect themselves and their assets. To learn more about our operation and our Professional Liability Insurance solutions, contact us today at (855) 585-6255.

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