Are witness statements attorney work product?

Superior Court (1976) 64 Cal. … 4th 480, the courts have determined that witness statements obtained by attorneys or their agents are work product. If an attorney’s notes or impressions are “inextricably intertwined” with that statement, then the statement is treated as absolutely protected under section 2018.030(a).

What is considered attorney work product?

The work product doctrine states that an adverse party generally may not discover or compel disclosure of written or oral materials prepared by or for an attorney in the course of legal representation, especially in preparation for litigation.

Are witness names work product?

Superior Court, 57 Cal. 2d 355 (1961), concluded that witness statements are not entitled to work product protection as a matter of law. The Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeal to hold that witness statements obtained through an attorney-directed interview are entitled to work product protection.

Are witness interviews work product?

The California Supreme Court held that witness statements collected by or at the direction of an attorney constitute at least qualified work product, as a matter of law.

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Is a witness statement a legal document?

Witness statements are formal court documents. They’re made by witnesses to: set out evidence to prove the facts alleged by a party in the particulars of claim, defence or other statement of case. in civil disputes, satisfy the burden of proof, which is on the balance of probabilities.

What counts as work product?

The work-product doctrine now encompasses “documents and tangible things that are prepared in anticipation of litigation or for trial by or for another party or its representative,”3 and a party’s representative can be its attorney, but it also can be its insurer, employee or other agent.

Does the client own attorney work product?

The client is entitled to all papers and property the client provided, all litigation materials, all correspondence, all items the lawyer has obtained from others, and all notes or internal memorandums that may constitute work product.

Who can see a witness statement?

The police will ask you to explain what you saw, either in writing or on video – this is your witness statement. They’ll ask you to sign it to say it’s true. People involved with the case – for example lawyers or the judge, will read or watch your witness statement. They might also use it as evidence in court.

What constitutes a witness statement?

A witness statement is a document recording the evidence of a person, which is signed by that person to confirm that the contents of the statement are true. … A statement should record what the witness saw, heard or felt.

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What is opinion work product?

Opinion work product is the record of an attorney’s mental impressions, ideas or strategies, and is almost never subject to discovery.

Are depositions work product?

Most courts extend work product protection to “intangible” work product such as oral communications, deposition testimony, etc.

Can a client assert work product privilege?

The answer is not obvious. The policy of the work product doctrine is to encourage attorneys to work up cases, examine both the good and the bad facts, analyze the effective in addition to the weak legal arguments, all without hesitation or fear of disclosure.

Are interview notes privileged?

Notes of interviews with witnesses who do not constitute “the client” will therefore only be privileged where litigation privilege applies. … As a result, notes taken by lawyers of investigation interviews will not automatically be privileged by virtue of the fact the notes were taken by a lawyer.

Is a witness statement enough evidence?

An eyewitness statement must be made under oath and is considered evidence because the person is willing to testify to what they saw. … In a trial, the judge or jury would also consider other evidence, if there is any and the accused’s statement and weigh them against the witness statement.

Are witness statements admissible?

The testimony of a witness that he saw the accused commit or participate in the commission of the crime for which the accused is being tried shall be admissible in evidence in a criminal prosecution in any trial court ordained and established under article III of the Constitution of the United States.

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Can I refuse to give a witness statement at work?

The employer should not automatically refuse to disclose a document if a third party, for example a colleague who has given a witness statement, does not consent to it being released. The employer should consider taking steps to anonymise the document before disclosing it.