EU Court: Attorney-Client Privilege Does Not Apply To Communications Between Companies and In-House Counsel

Highlighting the differences between American law practice and international law practice, the second-highest court in the European Union ruled today that attorney-client privilege does not apply to communications between companies and their in-house counsel. Contending that attorney-client privilege applied, a Dutch chemical company and lawyers' groups had sought to exclude from evidence in an antitrust case documents seized in a 2003 dawn investigatory raid of Akzo Nobel's offices in Manchester in Britain, according to the International Herald Tribune and the Lawyer. However, the Court of First Instance rejected that argument, saying that there is no privilege because in-house lawyers are loyal to their companies and don't offer independent legal advice.

abajournal.com EU Court: Attorney-Client Privilege Does Not Apply To Communications Between Companies and In-House Counsel
Sun, Sep 23, 2007 abajournal.com