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Is There Attorney-Client Privilege For Accident Cases In Florida?

When you choose to meet with a personal injury attorney on Florida’s Suncoast, you may be wondering if what you say to them remains confidential. Today, we will be looking at attorney-client privilege in Florida and how it can ultimately affect your case.

What Is Privileged Information?

In Florida, privileged information is information that cannot be disclosed without any consent. Examples of this include attorney-client privilege, spousal communication privilege, and privilege against self-incrimination.
While many are already familiar with privilege against self-incrimination according to the Fifth Amendment in the United States constitution, fewer people are aware of attorney-client privilege and what that entails.

When Does Attorney-Client Privilege Apply?

Attorney-client privilege applies when you establish your attorney-client relationship. You cannot be compelled to testify about any privileged information you disclose to your attorney.

However, there are certain requirements when it comes to these privileges. For example, the disclosure of the information must be made between an attorney and their client or potential client, and the purpose of the communication was to obtain legal advice.

Additionally, the individual would have expected that the disclosed information would remain confidential, and the attorney acted in his professional capacity during the meeting.

What If There is a Third-Party Presence?

Attorney-client privilege only applies to the attorney and client. Therefore, you must practice caution when there is a third party present. Anyone else in the room listening to the information isn’t affected by attorney-client privilege.

Can You Waive Attorney-Client Privilege?

Privileged information cannot be obtained through discovery requests in most cases. A discovery request includes depositions, interrogations, and requests to produce. However, the attorney-client privilege can be waived under certain circumstances.

• Client discloses information while seeking legal advice on how to commit a crime
• The client dies, or a potential heir files litigation regarding the decedent’s estate
• The attorney represented both parties, and there is now a dispute related to the joint representation
• Law enforcement officials monitor conversations between attorneys and inmates

There are also some cases in which some of the information is privileged, and some is not. For example, meeting dates and times between a client and their attorney is not privileged information, even though the conversation they have during the meeting is privileged.

What Should You Tell Your Attorney In An Accident Case?

Once you have attorney-client privilege, it is important to disclose everything to your attorney related to your case. This allows you to speak freely with your attorney without fear that the information will later be disclosed to a third party.

Choosing to conceal information from your attorney can ultimately hurt your case. For example, do not hide information about a previous injury or condition because it can potentially be challenged by the other party involved.

Tell your attorney everything immediately. With the information, your attorney can develop a strategy to help deal with any issues that may arise during your case. Remember, to do this, you must be upfront with all the information.
Even something small you conceal can prove to have devastating effects on your case. You don’t want your attorney finding any of this hidden information out during a trial or deposition. At that point, it may be too late for them to do anything about it.

Attorney-client privilege can benefit your personal injury case in various ways, as long as are you are honest and upfront with your attorney.

Ready to discuss your case and find the right attorney for you on Florida’s Suncoast? Don’t hesitate.

During his time as a public attorney for the State of Florida, Bernard Walsh developed a passion for defending the legal rights of Florida's citizens. Having seen many people being taken advantage of after being injured and the financial harm that can cause for families he committed himself fully to helping injured clients get justice, by fighting to make greedy insurance companies pay what they owe.

Is There Attorney-Client Privilege For Accident Cases In Florida?

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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