A recent issue of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly features discussion with Steve Riden in an article titled “Accidentally disclosed draft letter must be returned.”

The article covers a decision by a Superior Court judge in the Business Litigation Session concerning whether a litigant’s accidental disclosure of privileged information constituted a waiver of the attorney-client privilege. The decision was entered in the case titled Van Vuuren vLowenstein Sandler LLP, et al. (Lawyers Weekly No. 09-004-22).

The decision addresses a situation involving a party’s mistaken disclosure of a draft letter, which was attached to a motion filed in a shareholder freezeout suit. The party who received the inadvertently-disclosed document resisted a motion to compel its return and argued that the attorney-client privilege was waived. The court (Judge Kenneth W. Salinger) ruled that the accidental disclosure did not constitute a waiver of the privilege.

In the article, Steve Riden is quoted as follows:

Boston civil litigator Stephen D. Riden said he was pleased by the court’s acknowledgement that lawyers are humans and humans make mistakes.

“I think every practitioner has had that ‘Oh, no!’ moment when they fear they have accidentally produced privileged information and are worried they have done lasting damage to a client,” Riden said. “It happens all the time, but what this court is saying is that one mistake isn’t going to open the door into discovery of protected privileged communications.”

The article is by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly’s reporter, Eric T. Berkman.

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.