What is Attorney-Client Privilege?

When working on a case with your attorney, keeping attorney-client privilege in mind can be critical to keeping your case safe. It provides legal protection that is necessary to how our legal system operates, enables your attorney to work on your case in confidence, and most importantly, ensures that you can have an open and honest conversation with them about the details of your situation.

Attorney-client privilege on its own is a legal right provided to clients, which ensures that your attorney cannot discuss any private conversations you have with them with a third party. While that sounds simple, the impacts of this rule extend much further than your personal information being discussed with someone you don’t know; it provides the legal assurance that your attorney cannot testify against you, which means that they couldn’t be used as evidence in your case.

The privilege also ensures that you can securely have necessary conversations with your attorney. To be effective, they need to know everything you can tell them pertaining to your case, which sometimes includes very personal, vulnerable information. Giving your representation every detail your attorney wants to discuss prepares them for whatever may come up in the courtroom and gives them much better ground to defend you.

Attorney-client privilege applies to all cases, big or small. From felony criminal charges to protection order cases or CPS invesitgations, attorney-client privilege matters.   Whether you are in a big county or a small city, facing a big problem or a smaller one, attorney-client privilege applies. As long as you have an attorney, the privilege applies and you should do your part to protect it.

Just as your attorney won’t discuss the details of your case, you shouldn’t discuss anything with third parties, either. While the attorney-client privilege does not legally restrict clients from discussing their case with other people, it is always recommended to keep all the details of your case between yourself and your attorney. They may be bound by attorney-client privilege, but your best friend, mom, or Facebook page are not. In fact, other individuals you speak to may not have a choice in giving up your information; they can be subpoenaed, or legally obligated by law to appear in court and testify against you. Even your best friend or your parents can be called to court.

Additionally, your Facebook friends are obviously not your attorney – unless your whole friend group passed the bar exam, they likely don’t know the best legal advice for you. Even if they did, without the background knowledge of your case, they likely won’t be able to give you much help. While asking for advice from friends can be cathartic, it’s always best to listen to the advice of your attorney. They’ve been through this before, and likely have a plan in place to fight your case which may be disrupted if their advice is not followed. Your friends may tell you what you want to hear or have ideas on what should be done, but they aren’t experienced professionals and what you discuss with them isn’t protected information.  

Your attorney is watching out for you and will protect you. Help your attorney to help you, by protecting your client confidentiality.

Our goal at Burke Brown Attorneys, PLLC is to get the results you need. We respect the process of attorney-client privilege and know how important it is to ensure a fair trial for you. If you’re in need of caring, effective legal counsel for your criminal defense case, contact us today.

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Burke Brown Attorneys, PLLC

The first step of our approach here at Burke Brown Attorneys, PLLC? Listening to you explain your legal situation. Our attorneys have nearly 40 years of combined experience in successfully defending people against the most serious accusations.

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