Ethics and Privilege Consulting


In-house lawyers and outside counsel confront a complex array of ethics and professional responsibility issues in litigation, transactional and advice matters for their clients. The practice of law frequently crosses geographic boundaries, and ever-changing technology and communication methods present constant challenges to lawyers’ ability to maintain the confidentiality of their clients’ information and privileged communications, among other ethics and professional responsibility issues. Opposing counsel may attempt to exploit charges of ethical lapses, conflicts of interest and attorney-client privilege issues lapses for litigation advantage.

Ethics advice and consulting. We provide a wide range of services to general counsel offices and law firms regarding legal ethics and professional responsibility issues, including conflicts of interest, confidentiality, and attorney-client privilege and work product protections, especially those that arise in multijurisdictional matters.

We also assist clients in establishing procedures to ensure that internal communications with key constituents remain privileged and in avoiding waiver through communications to third parties such as insurers or in the course of litigation.

We can advise clients on the full range of ethics and legal risk management issues that confront in-house counsel, including:

  • Managing conflict of interest issues, including joint defenses and intracorporate conflicts.
  • Attorney-client privilege (and waiver), including preserving privilege when the lines between business and legal advice are blurred and application of the privilege to successor entities and affiliates.
  • Ex parte communications with current and former managers and employees.
  • Conducting lawful and ethical internal corporate investigations and handling misconduct issues, including “who is the client” in such situations and how to best communicate that role, and the in-house counsel’s obligations to report “up the ladder.”
  • Employee confidential communications using employer-provided computers and email.
  • Improper acquisition and inadvertent disclosure of information and documents.
  • Ethical rules governing social media information.
  • Settlements and negotiations.
  • Professionalism and civility rules.

Protecting the attorney-client privilege. We provide CLE seminars on attorney-client privilege and ethics issues for in-house legal staffs.

Expert witness services. Our team members have been retained as expert witnesses on legal ethics and the law of lawyering in a variety of litigation matters, including employment disputes involving former corporate lawyers, the standard of care for attorneys, and confidentiality and privilege issues.



Key Contacts