When Internal Documents Aren’t Covered by Attorney-Client Privilege

 A decision issued on March 6 by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia serves as a stark reminder that internal investigations must be carefully structured and executed to garner the protection of the attorney-client privilege and attorney work product doctrine, especially when non-attorneys are being used to assist in the investigation. The case is United States ex rel. Barko v. Halliburton, No. 1:05-CV-1276 (D.D.C. slip op. issued March 6, 2014) [an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com subscribers]. I mentioned this case briefly in my blog post Workplace Investigations:  Tips & Templates for Preserving the Privilege.

For those who conduct or supervise internal investigations or manage compliance programs, this case is a must read.

Today’s edition of the Daily Report includes a more in-depth analysis of the case and a discussion of the implications of the case for legal counsel. For readers outside the metro Atlanta area, the Daily Report is the primary source for news about the courts and the business and profession of law for lawyers in metro Atlanta and the state of Georgia.

Click to read the Daily Report article:  When Internal Documents Aren’t Covered by Attorney-Client Privilege

 Read more articles about managing workplace conflict at Win-Win HR, a blog by Lorene Schaefer.

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