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Tag: confidential

Does the statute that enables a spouse to not testify against their spouse carry over into divorce if the alleged crime took place during the marriage? 

I don’t know the rules as they apply in different jurisdictions, but I can tell you what the rule is in Utah, where I practice divorce and family law. 

In Utah, the rule is as follows (see Utah Rules of Evidence (URE) 502): 

Rule 502. Husband – Wife. 

(a) Definition. 

(a)(1) “Confidential communication” means a communication: 

(a)(1)(A) made privately by any person to his or her spouse; and 

(a)(1)(B) not intended for disclosure to any other person. 

(b) Privilege in Criminal Proceedings. In a criminal proceeding, a wife may not be compelled to testify against her husband, nor a husband against his wife. 

(c) Statement of the Privilege. An individual has a privilege during the person’s life: 

(c)(1) to refuse to testify or to prevent his or her spouse or former spouse from testifying as to any confidential communication made by the individual to the spouse during their marriage; and 

(c)(2) to prevent another person from disclosing any such confidential communication. 

(d) Who May Claim Privilege. The privilege may be claimed by: 

(d)(1) the person who made the confidential communication; 

(d)(2) the person’s guardian or conservator; 

(d)(3) the non-communicating spouse to whom the confidential communication was made may claim the privilege on behalf of the person who made the confidential communication during the life of the communicating spouse. 

(e) Exceptions to the Privilege. No privilege exists under paragraph (c) in the following circumstances: 

(e)(1) Spouses as Adverse Parties. In a civil proceeding in which the spouses are adverse parties; 

(e)(2) Furtherance of Crime or Tort. As to any communication which was made, in whole or in part, to enable or aid anyone to commit; to plan to commit; or to conceal a crime or a tort. 

(e)(3) Spouse Charged with Crime or Tort. In a proceeding in which one spouse is charged with a crime or a tort against the person or property of: 

(e)(3)(A) the other spouse; 

(e)(3)(B) the child of either spouse; 

(e)(3)(C) a person residing in the household of either spouse; or 

(e)(3)(D) a third person if the crime or tort is committed in the course of committing a crime or tort against any of the persons named above. 

(e)(4) Interest of Minor Child. If the interest of a minor child of either spouse may be adversely affected, the Court may refuse to allow invocation of the privilege. 

You can learn more about the spousal privilege by clicking this link to commentary on URE Rule 502. 

 

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277  

https://www.quora.com/Does-the-statute-that-enables-a-spouse-to-not-testify-against-their-spouse-carry-over-into-divorce-if-the-alleged-crime-took-place-during-the-marriage/answer/Eric-Johnson-311 

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When a lawyer drops a client, is the reason shared with the judge and/or opposing counsel (i.e., the client refused to be reasonable, etc.)?

When a lawyer drops a client, is the reason shared with the judge and/or opposing counsel (i.e., the client refused to be reasonable, etc.)?

In Utah, where I practice divorce and family law, the answer is: no.

When a lawyer drops a client/stops representing a client (known as “withdrawing as counsel” for that client), the lawyer is not permitted to inform the judge or opposing counsel as to the reasons why. This is due to the attorney’s duties to keep confidential 1) the communications between attorney and client and 2) the information relating to the representation of the client. See Utah Supreme Court Rules of Professional Conduct:

Rule 1.16(d):

(d) Upon termination of representation, a lawyer shall take steps to the extent reasonably practicable to protect a client’s interests[.]”

Rule 1.6. Confidentiality of Information.

(a) A lawyer shall not reveal information relating to the representation of a client unless the client gives informed consent, the disclosure is impliedly authorized in order to carry out the representation or the disclosure is permitted by paragraph (b).

(b) A lawyer may reveal information relating to the representation of a client to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes necessary:

(b)(1) to prevent reasonably certain death or substantial bodily harm;

(b)(2) to prevent the client from committing a crime or fraud that is reasonably certain to result in substantial injury to the financial interests or property of another and in furtherance of which the client has used or is using the lawyer’s services;

(b)(3) to prevent, mitigate or rectify substantial injury to the financial interests or property of another that is reasonably certain to result or has resulted from the client’s commission of a crime or fraud in furtherance of which the client has used the lawyer’s services;

(b)(4) to secure legal advice about the lawyer’s compliance with these Rules;

(b)(5) to establish a claim or defense on behalf of the lawyer in a controversy between the lawyer and the client, to establish a defense to a criminal charge or civil claim against the lawyer based upon conduct in which the client was involved, or to respond to allegations in any proceeding concerning the lawyer’s representation of the client;

(b)(6) to comply with other law or a court order; or

(b)(7) to detect and resolve conflicts of interest arising from the lawyer’s change of employment or from changes in the composition or ownership of a firm, but only if the revealed information would not compromise the attorney-client privilege or otherwise prejudice the client.

(c) A lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to prevent the inadvertent or unauthorized disclosure of, or unauthorized access to, information relating to the representation of a client.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/When-a-lawyer-drops-a-client-is-the-reason-shared-with-the-judge-and-or-opposing-counsel-I-e-the-client-refused-to-be-reasonable-etc/answer/Eric-Johnson-311

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When a lawyer drops a client, is the reason shared with the judge and/or opposing counsel (i.e., the client refused to be reasonable, etc.)?

When a lawyer drops a client, is the reason shared with the judge and/or opposing counsel (i.e., the client refused to be reasonable, etc.)?

In Utah, where I practice divorce and family law, the answer is: no.

When a lawyer drops a client/stops representing a client (known as “withdrawing as counsel” for that client), the lawyer is not permitted to inform the judge or opposing counsel as to the reasons why. This is due to the attorney’s duties to keep confidential 1) the communications between attorney and client and 2) the information relating to the representation of the client. See Utah Supreme Court Rules of Professional Conduct:

Rule 1.16(d):

(d) Upon termination of representation, a lawyer shall take steps to the extent reasonably practicable to protect a client’s interests[.]”

Rule 1.6. Confidentiality of Information.

(a) A lawyer shall not reveal information relating to the representation of a client unless the client gives informed consent, the disclosure is impliedly authorized in order to carry out the representation or the disclosure is permitted by paragraph (b).

(b) A lawyer may reveal information relating to the representation of a client to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes necessary:

(b)(1) to prevent reasonably certain death or substantial bodily harm;

(b)(2) to prevent the client from committing a crime or fraud that is reasonably certain to result in substantial injury to the financial interests or property of another and in furtherance of which the client has used or is using the lawyer’s services;

(b)(3) to prevent, mitigate or rectify substantial injury to the financial interests or property of another that is reasonably certain to result or has resulted from the client’s commission of a crime or fraud in furtherance of which the client has used the lawyer’s services;

(b)(4) to secure legal advice about the lawyer’s compliance with these Rules;

(b)(5) to establish a claim or defense on behalf of the lawyer in a controversy between the lawyer and the client, to establish a defense to a criminal charge or civil claim against the lawyer based upon conduct in which the client was involved, or to respond to allegations in any proceeding concerning the lawyer’s representation of the client;

(b)(6) to comply with other law or a court order; or

(b)(7) to detect and resolve conflicts of interest arising from the lawyer’s change of employment or from changes in the composition or ownership of a firm, but only if the revealed information would not compromise the attorney-client privilege or otherwise prejudice the client.

(c) A lawyer shall make reasonable efforts to prevent the inadvertent or unauthorized disclosure of, or unauthorized access to, information relating to the representation of a client.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/When-a-lawyer-drops-a-client-is-the-reason-shared-with-the-judge-and-or-opposing-counsel-I-e-the-client-refused-to-be-reasonable-etc/answer/Eric-Johnson-311

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