Bergeson, LLP Affiliated Counsel Jared L. Kopel’s Article “DC Cir. Breathes New Life Into Attorney-Client Privilege” Featured In Law360
Mr. Kopel’s article “DC Cir. Breathes New Life Into Attorney-Client Privilege,” is featured in Law360 for the month of June. In his article, Mr. Kopel discusses how the court of appeals for the District of Columbia breathed new life into the attorney-client privilege. In doing so, the court vacated an earlier decision by District Judge James Gwin arising from In re: Kellogg Brown & Root Inc., No. 14-5055, in which Judge Gwin compelled KBR to produce certain documents related to the False Claims Act at issue filed by an employee of KBR. The documents being sought were related to KBR’s internal investigation that was conducted pursuant to its code of business conduct, which is supervised by the U.S. Department of Labor. The court held that the documents concerning an internal investigation into possible government contract fraud were protected by the privilege. The circuit court provided essential guidance for when the attorney-client privilege is protected under the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark Upjohn decision. The controversy surrounding the KBR investigation exhibits the importance of taking certain steps to ensure the application of the attorney-client privilege to documents created in connection with an internal investigation.