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A person who employs or retains an attorney to represent him or her in any legal business; to assist, to counsel, and to defend the individual in legal proceedings; and to appear on his or her behalf in court.

This term includes a person who divulges confidential matters to an attorney while pursuing professional assistance, regardless of sub-sequent employment of the attorney. This attorney-client relationship is quite complex and extensive in its scope. One of the key aspects of this relationship is confidentiality of communications. A client has the right to require that his or her attorney keep secret any discussion between them during the course of their relationship that pertains to the matters for which the attorney is hired. This protection extends to a person who might have disclosed any confidential matters while seeking aid from an attorney, whether the attorney was employed or not. If, for example, someone is "shopping" for an attorney to handle a Divorce, the person might reveal certain private information to several attorneys, all of whom are expected to keep such communications confidential.


Attorney-Client Privilege.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

CLIENT, practice. One who employs and retains an attorney or counsellor to manage or defend a suit or action in which he is a party, or to advise him about some legal matters.
     2. The duties of the client towards his counsel are, 1st. to give him a written authority, 1 Ch. Pr. 19; 2. to disclose his case with perfect candor3. to offer spontaneously, advances of money to his attorney; 2 Ch. Pr. 27; 4. he should, at the end of the suit, promptly pay his attorney his fees. Ib. His rights are, 1. to be diligently served in the management of his business 2. to be informed of its progress and, 3. that his counsel shall not disclose what has been professionally confided to him. See Attorney at law; Confidential communication.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
consented to the member's continuation of professional services and retention of any client files or records the successor firm retains."
As a result, the timing of access to client files may be critical in implementing client choice.
Analysis of the data revealed that responding firms were aware of issues concerning their handling of client files, correspondence, and tax returns.
"If we attempted to sell our client files, we would not survive in this business in our market.
The court ordered a 91-day suspension for the attorney who took and copied client files of the original firm for his own use and a 60-day suspension for the attorney who maintained control of a few files for several days after leaving the original firm.
The solution will allow the company to store its electronic client information, such as e-mails, documents and scanned files, within an integrated electronic client file. It will provide a single view of client files and enable staff to reduce search times and access information while on the road.
For one firm, it may be acceptable to store client files, but for other firms, the decision may depend on the type of client, the sensitivity of the information and control measures already in place.
Place notes in the client file, and maintain only one set of client files.
On termination, Equitable would demand that the agent hand over client files and often would tell clients that they had a new agent.
Amicus Attorney, by Gavel & Gown Software, Inc., schedules appointments, manages to-do lists, records billable time, and tracks client files, phone calls, and e-mail messages.
1.197-2(b)(4) (e.g., data files, customer lists or client files), unless the database or item is in the public domain and is incidental to a computer program.

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