Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Pennsylvania Superior Court's Latest Take on the Attorney Work Product Doctrine


In the case of Estate of Paterno v. NCAA, 2017 Pa. Super. 247 (Pa. Super. July 25, 2017 Stabile, Panella, Dubow, J.J.) (Op. by Stabile, J.), the Pennsylvania Superior Court addressed the attorney work product doctrine.  
 
In a decision which affirmed in part and reversed in part the lower court’s decision, the appellate court ruled that the discovery of non-verbatim attorney notes and memoranda concerning interviews should not have been allowed by the lower court.  
 
The Superior Court noted that such items, including attorney summaries, are totally protected by the attorney work product privilege.   The court more specifically stated that the attorney work product is protected as long as the items involve attorney conclusions and mental impressions, whether or not such paperwork was prepared in anticipation of litigation.
 
In its decision, the court also noted that the protections of the attorney work product doctrine are broader under state law then federal law in this respect. 

 Anyone wishing to review a copy of this decision may click HERE.

 
I send thanks to Attorney James Beck of the Philadelphia law office of Reed Smith for bringing this case to my attention.  

 

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