Generally, the client is entitled to all documents originally provided by the client, and all documents filed, served or sent by the lawyer to others. … While virtually every attorney keeps “notes” in his or her files, very few can agree on exactly what specific information constitutes attorney notes.
What documents belong to the client?
Documents belonging to client:
– Documents sent to or received by the firm as agents for the client i.e. correspondence with counsel; – Final version of documents which go to the object of the retainer; – Final versions of documents prepared by a third party whom was paid by the client.
Does a client have a right to their file?
California’s Rules of Professional Conduct state that if termination of representation is done for any reason, and subject to an applicable protective order, NDA, or law, the attorney has the obligation to release documents, at the client’s request, all client materials and property.
Who owns the client’s legal file?
The papers in a client’s file belong to the client and must be released promptly to the client following termination of the attorney-client relationship if requested by the client. Rule 3-700(D)(2), Rules of Professional Conduct of the State Bar of California.
Can a lawyer withhold documents?
Privilege entitles a party to withhold documents and/or deny access to them on the basis that the documents contain confidential legal communications between a lawyer and client. It is a valuable protection. Privilege exists and arises at both common law and in statue pursuant to the Evidence Act 1995 (NSW) (the Act).
Do working papers belong to client?
Other accountancy Any records prepared by you which are required by law to be kept by the client will generally belong to the client. File copies, attendance notes and drafts, including working papers, will generally belong to you.
What is a client file?
As defined in the new rule, the term “client file” includes items such as papers supplied to the lawyer by the client; correspondence (whether physical or electronic); pleadings; investigatory or discovery documents; intrinsically valuable documents such as wills, trusts, deeds and securities; and copies of the …
What is in a client file attorney?
‘Client papers and property’ includes correspondence, pleadings, deposition transcripts, exhibits, physical evidence, expert’s reports, and other items reasonably necessary to the client’s representation, whether the client has paid for them or not.”
Does attorney work product belong to the client?
Who holds the protections for work product? Like attorney-client privilege, the protections for work product belong to the client and secrecy is an obligation incumbent on the attorney from which the client may release the attorney (see question 7).
Is a client entitled to attorney work product in California?
As one court noted, “California has two conflicting absolutes, the absolute right of a client to his attorney’s work product, and the absolute right of an attorney to protect his or her impressions, conclusions, opinions, and legal research or theories from disclosure.” (Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.
How long does an attorney have to keep client files in California?
The Los Angeles County Bar Association concluded that a civil attorney should retain potentially significant papers and property in the former client’s file for at least five years analogous to Rule 4-100(B)(3) of the California Rules of Professional Conduct, which requires an attorney to maintain all records of client …
How long does an attorney have to keep client files in Texas?
Other client property shall be identified as such and appropriately safeguarded. Complete records of such account funds and other property shall be kept by the lawyer and shall be preserved for a period of five years after termination of the representation.
What constitutes a client file California?
California defines “client papers and properties” and then notes two exceptions. California Rule of Professional Conduct 3-700(D)(1) defines “client papers and property” to include “correspondence, pleadings, deposition transcripts, exhibits, physical evidence, expert reports, and other items reasonably necessary to …
What is unethical for a lawyer?
Attorney misconduct may include: conflict of interest, over billing, refusing to represent a client for political or professional motives, false or misleading statements, knowingly accepting worthless lawsuits, hiding evidence, abandoning a client, failing to disclose all relevant facts, arguing a position while …
How long should a lawyer keep client files?
The Model Rules suggest at least five years. See Model Rule 1.15(a). Many states set this requirement at six years, and some set it even further out. However, for certain types of legal matters, you must keep the files even longer.
Can a law firm sue a client?
From a risk management perspective, it is often unwise for law firms to sue clients for unpaid legal fees. Bringing suit against a non-paying client is likely to result in one of two outcomes – a default judgment against a judgment-proof client or a counterclaim against the suing attorney for legal malpractice.