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Privilege

Three Subject Matter Waiver Decisions Send Mixed Signals: Part I

Understandably based on fairness notions, the subject matter waiver doctrine prevents litigants from explicitly or impliedly using privileged communications as a "sword" while simultaneously asserting the privilege as a "shield" to prevent discovery of related communications. As with many privilege concepts, applying the subject matter waiver doctrine can involve subtle analyses.

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Privilege

Slip and Fall Case Provides Useful Guidance for More Serious Scenarios: Part II

Last week's Privilege Point described a Louisville, Kentucky, restaurant's loss of privilege protection because it could not prove that the managers providing information after a slip and fall knew the "investigation notes'" purpose. Bobalik v. BJ's Restaurants, Inc., Case No. 3:19-CV-0661-RGJ-LLK, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 231289 (W.D. Ky. Dec. 9, 2020). The court then turned to the restaurant’s work product assertion.

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Privilege

Slip and Fall Case Provides Useful Guidance for More Serious Scenarios: Part I

Under the commonly (but not universally) recognized Upjohn standard, a corporation's lawyer may engage in privileged communications with any level of corporate employee who has information the lawyer needs. But that favorable Upjohn standard is not self-executing – there is another condition lawyers must satisfy.

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