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Attorney-Client Privilege

As seen in entertainment, many people have heard of the concept known as attorney-client privilege. Unfortunately, there are several misconceptions about this crucial element when it comes to filing a personal injury claim. For those who want clarity on what is lawyer-client confidentiality and how it applies in such circumstances – we provide an informative breakdown that ensures you understand your options fully before taking any further steps.

Attorney-client privilege was established to facilitate the honest, confident exchange of vital information between legal professionals and those they serve. By guaranteeing that conversations remain private, clients feel reassured in their discussions with attorneys – forging a strong foundation on which long-term strategies can be discussed without fear or hesitation.

Attorney-client privilege keeps all forms of communication between a client and their lawyer confidential – from emails to text messages, phone conversations and more. While exceptions may apply in certain scenarios, generally speaking the privileged nature of such exchanges provides an added layer of protection for clients communicating with attorneys. When uncertain about attorney-client confidentiality provisions it is best practice to reach out by telephone rather than in writing as an extra precautionary measure.

When Attorney-Client Privilege Applies:

Establishing an attorney-client relationship is essential for the client to be afforded protection under lawyer confidentiality laws. An agreement outlining such a relationship can serve as proof of this connection, however even potential clients may benefit from legal privilege in certain circumstances. Information shared with lawyers that are not formally acting as counsel will unfortunately remain open to public disclosure – so it’s important when seeking advice or assistance one must ensure they have taken all steps necessary to activate their right to discretion and privacy.

There are several benefits to attorney-client privilege:

  • Confidentiality will give you peace of mind
  • You can discuss sensitive matters openly
  • The ability to share the exact truth will help your lawyer act in your best interests

For example, when filing a personal injury claim, having a pre-existing condition can seem like an obstacle. However, if you inform your lawyer of this information it will remain confidential. Armed with the right strategy set out by legal counsel, this information could be leveraged to win your case. It’s important for accident victims to understand how beneficial their individual circumstances can be when fighting against insurance companies in order to receive fair compensation.

When Attorney- Client Privilege Does Not Apply:

  • A third party is looped into the conversation: Your right to attorney-client privilege may be waived if someone else joins your conversations with a lawyer. For instance, involving family members or copying other people into emails could result in them being privvy to private information that you don’t intend for anyone outside of the client and their representation. Even having an uninvolved witness present can have negative consequences – so make sure your communication remains between just you and your legal counsel.
  • You waive your privilege by sharing details with others: It is your responsibility to protect the confidentiality of attorney-client communications. Though in many cases, your lawyer will proactively enforce this privilege on behalf of their client, you ultimately have the final say.  When information alluding to confidential talks between yourself and legal counsel finds its way into public discourse without authorization from either party, then any sense of privacy held within those discussions has been waived.
  • Your attorney needs to use the information in self-defense: For example, when an attorney is sued for malpractice, they may be need to share certain details to support their defense. Lawyers are provided legal rights to use even the most confidential conversations when they are accused of wrongdoing.

Before you start talking your case through, make sure your conversation is protected. When seeking qualified counsel for a delicate situation, don’t share any intimate details until after signing with that lawyer.  Chances are that those conversations might not be safeguarded yet.