I was meeting with a client this week and I kept noticing every time I asked her a tough question she would hesitate to answer. Turns out she did not want to tell me what she believed to be embarrassing facts about herself and her marriage because she did not want anyone else to learn this information. She was relieved when I told her that anything she tells me is confidential and I would not tell anyone.

What you tell your lawyer in confidence is confidential!

The law clearly mandates that lawyers in California owe you, their clients, a duty to keep your secrets confidential. This is an absolute and broad duty your lawyer must follow.

This duty to keep your secrets confidential extends to lawyers you may speak with but not even actually hire!

No matter what, when you speak to a lawyer that lawyer has a duty to keep your secrets confidential.

If you speak to an attorney about your divorce then your husband hires that attorney. Is that proper? NO!

If you speak to a lawyer about your case your husband cannot later hire that lawyer to represent him in your divorce, custody or support matter. The reason being, you have likely communicated confidential information to the lawyer you spoke with. And, that lawyer, even if you have not paid them anything, owes you a duty of confidentiality.

In conclusion, you should know that you can speak honestly and open with a lawyer, whether or not you hire that lawyer, about your divorce, custody and/or support matter and not worry about that lawyer using that information against you later.


Paul Nathan
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Marin County California Divorce, Child Support and Custody Lawyer Representing Women Exclusively
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