Photo Attorney

Mar 24, 2007

Keeping Legal Communications Private

Photographers sometimes encounter legal problems with their photography business. The first response may be to share the concerns with other photographers and friends to enlist their support and advice. After the photographer engages an attorney to help with the problem, however, you must be careful not to share too much.

The Attorney/Client Privilege is a long standing legal principle that protects communications between attorneys and their clients. It is designed to encourage openness and honesty so that the attorney can provide more informed and effective counsel to the client. The privilege becomes especially important in the litigation context because privileged communications, whether written or oral, are not disclosed to the opposing party. So your discussions about strategy and analysis of your case are kept private.

A waiver of the privilege may occur even though it is not intended. For example, if the client discloses communications had with the attorney to others (such as by telling friends or posting information on the Internet), confidentiality will be lost and a waiver will occur. Once the privilege has been waived, it is treated as a waiver for all purposes. At that point, the opposing party can force the attorney or client to share the previously private communications that might damage the case.

Since it may be difficult to discern what information about your case is confidential, it is best to not discuss the matter at all with others. Mum's the word!

Take my advice; get professional help.

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