Court of Appeal confirms that privilege survives corporate dissolution

Adam Kramer of 3VB led by William Flenley QC of Maitland Chambers, instructed by Clyde & Co, convinced the Court of Appeal that once a document is privileged, it remains privileged forever unless that privilege is waived, hence copies of documents held by its solicitor client Dentons remained privileged and could not be disclosed even after the relevant corporate client had been dissolved.

This arose in the context of a Cyprus client alleged to have been part of a fraudulent trading scheme. Further, by way of welcome clarification for law firms and their insurers, the Court confirmed that lawyers are duty-bound to seek to uphold their clients’ and former clients’ privilege, and accordingly the Defendant firm had been right to resist disclosure and the first instance judge right to award the firm its costs of doing so. See Addlesee and others v Dentons Europe LLP [2019] EWCA Civ 1600.

The judgment can be found here.