Attorney-Client Privilege: How does it work?


An attorney conversing with his client.

An attorney conversing with his client.

The attorney-client privilege comes from the Mississippi Rules of Evidence Rule 502 and is reinforced by the Mississippi Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1.6. “A lawyer shall not reveal the information relating to the representation of a client unless the client gives informed consent, the disclosure is impliedly authorized in order to carry out the representation, or the disclosure is permitted” by an exception to the rule. [1]

Can An Attorney Waive The Attorney-Client Privilege?

Unless it meets one of the exceptions below, the attorney cannot waive the privilege. It is important to note this privilege does not belong to the attorney, but to the client.

How Far Does The Attorney-Client Privilege go?

The privilege extends to your representative and to the agents of the attorney. Therefore, what you tell an attorney’s paralegal should be covered by the attorney-client privilege.

What Are The Exceptions?
  1. If an attorney’s services are sought to help anyone plan or commit a crime, then the privilege does not apply. This exception extends to committing a fraud on the court.
  2. If parties are claiming through a deceased client, then the attorney-client privilege will not apply to the deceased client. This is usually found in estate matters.
  3. If the client intentionally breaches the attorney-client privilege, then the privilege is waived to the entire subject matter that was breached.
  4. If the attorney intentionally breaches the attorney-client privilege, then the privilege is waived to the entire subject matter that was breached.
  5. When a document is attested to by a lawyer, then the attorney-client privilege is waived.
  6. When an attorney represents multiple clients jointly on a matter, then the attorney-client exception applies.
  7. The privilege may not apply when it comes to preventing reasonably certain death or bodily harm.
  8. An exception is made to the attorney-client privilege to comply with a law.
  9. Lastly, an exception is made to the privilege to comply with a court order.

If you have questions regarding the attorney-client privilege, you may contact your current attorney, or contact The Franks Law Firm, PLLC at (601) 283-2343 to setup you $20 consultation.

By: Attorney Joey Franks