Apparently you can take it too far.
Apparently you can take it too far.

No privilege?

A district judge ruled that Kellogg Brown & Root could not withhold the results of a probe that it had conducted, with the help of lawyers, into allegations that it defrauded the U.S. Military in Iraq by inflating costs and paying kickbacks. The judge reasoned that KBR made inquiry and put together a report of its findings not for the purpose of getting legal advice — in which case the attorney-client privilege would apply — but “to try to comply with KBR’s obligation to report improper conduct to the Department of Defense” — in which case the privilege would not apply. “Firms Can Hide Routine Probe Details by Using Lawyers, D.C. Circuit Holds“, July 27, 2014.

Continue Reading Catch a Waive

For people who lose a claim of confidential lawyer-client communication or work product privilege, the normal rule gives them a scary option if they want to contest the loss in a higher court. They must defy the order, which directs them to produce the documents or furnish the information, and thus stand in contempt of

The lawyer you hired to help you with lawsuits over the rights to Superman runs off with documents that you say contain top-secret attorney work product and attorney-client communications.

Worse, the lawyer gives a copy of the to your opponent, D.C. Comics. You report the theft to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. A grand jury

Blawgletter got some excellent feedback about our last post — on the D.C. Circuit's ruling this week that the lawyer work product doctrine protects a third-party auditor's memo to the extent it reports ideas that a lawyer birthed in anticipation of a lawsuit.

We doubted the court got it right.  At least one of you agreed with

The Seventh Circuit today turned back Whirlpool's effort to stop the hand-over of documents it claimed fell within its attorney-client privilege.  The panel noted that, in Mohawk Indus., Inc. v. Carpenter, 130 S. Ct. 599 (2009) (post here), the Court barred appeals from pretrial orders that breached a claim of privilege.  The panel also