COMMENT: OVERRIDING THE POSTHUMOUS APPLICATION OF THE ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE: DUE PROCESS FOR A CRIMINAL DEFENDANT Skip over navigation
LexisNexis® Browse Law Reviews and Treatises
Skip over navigation
Sign in with your lexis.com® ID to access the full text of this article.
-OR-
Order the full text of this article if you do not have a lexis.com® ID.
 
Price: 
US $22.00 (+ tax)
 
 

Copyright (c) 2000 Marquette Law Review
Marquette Law Review

COMMENT: OVERRIDING THE POSTHUMOUS APPLICATION OF THE ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE: DUE PROCESS FOR A CRIMINAL DEFENDANT

Summer, 2000

83 Marq. L. Rev. 785

Author

Tyson A. Ciepluch
 

Excerpt



I. Introduction
 
Imagine the following scenario. 1 A client tells her attorney in confidence that she has committed a crime. The client dies before the government begins any prosecution for the crime. Later, the government institutes a criminal prosecution against another person for the crime at issue. The lawyer for the deceased becomes aware of the prosecution either because the criminal defendant attempts to call the lawyer as a witness or through other channels known or unknown to the defendant. In either case, the lawyer cannot disclose this information because of a duty of confidentiality to the deceased client, 2 and because of the attorney-client privilege. 3

The above scenario serves as a hypothetical in law school ethics courses and also occurs in legal practice. 4 In practice, the quality of the information expressed by the decedent-client to her attorney may vary. A client's communication might range from that which will surely exculpate a current defendant to information that might minimize a defendant's involvement in a crime. In addition, an attorney might not know how such a client communication would affect a current defendant, if at all. 5 Nonetheless, a criminal defendant may have a strong interest in the information. 6 What is a lawyer to do knowing that another person faces criminal sanctions, possibly severe ones, for a crime likely committed by a deceased client? The current answer is that an attorney is prohibited from disclosing the confession of the deceased client. 7 The question is troubling because ...
 
 
If you are interested in obtaining a lexis.com® ID and Password, please contact us at 1-(800)-227-4908 or visit us at http://www.lexisnexis.com/.
Search Documents
 
eg., Environmental Insurance Coverage Under the Comprehensive General Liability Policy
 
 
 
 

Lexis® Web - The only search engine that delivers free web content specifically from legal sites validated by LexisNexis® attorney editors and includes tools for faster research and more relevant results.

 
LexisNexis Store
Research Now - Go to lexis.com
Connect the Dots - Free 1 hour webcast
Share. Network. Discover. - Go to LexisNexis Communities