Monthly Privilege Roundup: Legal Invoices, Money Laundering, and the Monster of Muskegon

We see privilege issues discussed in judicial decisions, legal commentary, and mainstream news.  Here is a roundup of interesting privilege issues for January 2017.

  • The California Supreme Court issued a significant ruling on the issue of whether the privilege protects the disclosure of lawyers’ invoices.  Andrew Downs of San Franciso’s Bullivant firm authored an excellent analysis of the opinion, which you can review here.
  • Jeffrey Willis, the alleged serial killer and so-called “Monster of Muskegon” who is awaiting trial for the murders of Jessica Heeringa and Rebekah Bletsch, claims that police and prosecutors took his attorney-client privileged notes from his jail jumpsuit.  Willis’ attorney claims that a “first-year law student could figure that out” and is seeking a dismissal.  Law professor Curt Benson disagrees, calling a dismissal “quite a stretch.”  Story here.
  • A Wall Street Journal report claims that “[t]ens of billions of dollars every  year move through opaque law-firm bank accounts that create a gap in U.S. money-laundering defenses.”  Law firms place clients’  money in their pooled, escrow or trust accounts, and claim that the attorney-client privilege protects client confidentiality.  Story here.
  • Daniel Altchek of Baltimore’s Miles & Stockbridge firm published an excellent article in InsideCounsel titled “Keeping Your Investigations Privileged May Get You in Hot Water with the NLRB.”  Check it out here.

Monthly Privilege Roundup: Aaron Hernandez, a Christmas Party Memo, and Privileged Pillow Talk?

We see privilege issues discussed in judicial decisions, legal commentary, and mainstream news.  Here is a roundup of interesting privilege issues for December 2016.

  • The Camarillo Acorn, a newspaper, filed a public-records request seeking old voicemails between the Camarillo Health Care District’s former CEO, Jane Rozanski, and CHCD’s attorney, Ralph Ferguson.  Allegations abound that Rozanski was dating Ferguson and helped him overbill CHCD by $425K.  A court stopped the production after Rozanski asserted the attorney-client privilege.  The Acorn responded in this editorial claiming it was interested in the truth, not privileged pillow talk.

More…

Presnell on Privileges Chosen as One of the ABA Journal’s Blawg 100 1

Editors of the ABA Journal announced they have selected Presnell on Privileges as one of the top 100 best blogs for a legal audience.

In addition, the magazine has added 10 more bloggers to its Blawg 100 Hall of Fame, featuring the very best law blogs, known for their untiring ability to craft high-quality, engaging posts sometimes on a daily basis.

Presnell on Privileges is authored by Todd Presnell, a trial lawyer in the Nashville office of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP.

“For 10 years, the Blawg 100 has helped shine a light on the stunning breadth of legal topics and voices to found in the legal blogosphere,” Acting Editor-Publisher Molly McDonough said. “Journal editors have selected yet another stellar list of blogs. We hope you’ll find legal information sources in this list that are completely new to you and bookmark them for regular reading.”

“It is a tremendous honor that the ABA Journal selected my blog among its 100 best in 2016, and I am humbled to join such an elite group of legal bloggers,” Presnell said.

About the ABA Journal:

The ABA Journal is the flagship magazine of the American Bar Association, and it is read by half of the nation’s 1.1 million lawyers every month. It covers the trends, people and finances of the legal profession from Wall Street to Main Street to Pennsylvania Avenue. ABAJournal.com features breaking legal news updated as it happens by staff reporters throughout every business day, a directory of more than 4,000 lawyer blogs, and the full contents of the magazine.