Answers to Four Critical Questions on Privilege in Internal Investigations

Many lawyers do not understand the concept of privilege fully, Stuart Altman, senior vice president and global CCO at Las Vegas Sands Corp., observed at a recent webinar hosted by Strafford. A privileged communication is one “between client and lawyer sent under confidential conditions for purposes of seeking or providing legal advice,” he explained. When it comes to internal investigations, it can be difficult to determine what constitutes a communication covered by the privilege, who counts as an attorney, who counts as a client and when privilege might be waived. Altman was joined by Michael Hayes, a partner at Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads, in discussing the nuances of the answers to these four key questions. See our three-part series on protecting attorney-client privilege and attorney work product while cooperating with the government: “Establishing Privilege and Work Product in an Investigation” (Feb. 8, 2017); “Strategies to Minimize Risks During Cooperation” (Feb. 22, 2017); and “Implications for Collateral Litigation” (Mar. 8, 2017).

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