Legal Alert - Nevada Privilege Law May Be Inadvertently Waived During Witness Preparation


By Bob L. Olson and Charles E. Gianelloni

It is common for a witness to refer to documents when testifying in order to refresh the witnesses’ recollection. NRS 50.125 requires disclosure of any writing used to refresh a witness’ recollection before or while testifying. What happens, however, when a witness is provided documents that are either privileged or protected by the work product doctrine when preparing to testify? NRS 47.020 and NRCP 26(b)(3) guarantee that the work product doctrine and the attorney-client privilege apply at all stages of all proceedings unless “relaxed by a state or procedural rule applicable to the specific situation.” NRS 47.020(1)(a). The Nevada Supreme Court’s recent decision in Las Vegas Sands Corp. v. Eighth Jud. Dist. Ct., 130 Nev. Adv. Op. 13 (Feb. 27, 2014), addressed the intersection of NRS 50.125 and Nevada privilege law in an issue of first impression.

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