In-House Lawyer’s Affidavit Secures Privilege Protection

In an interesting situation, the USDC for the District of Kansas ruled that the corporate attorney–client privilege protected emails between a university official and one of its in-house lawyers.  And lawyer writingit was the in-house lawyer’s methodical, well-crafted affidavit that persuaded the court.  Klaassen v. Atkinson, 2016 WL 3881334 (D. Kan. July 18, 2016).  You may read the decision here.

Background

The University of Kansas Medical Center (KUMC) conducted a due-process hearing against a tenured medical professor for unprofessional behavior.  A KUMC in-house lawyer served as the prosecutorial attorney, and Dr. Steven Stites ultimately issued a June 12, 2012 letter publicly censuring the physician for his conduct. More…