EVIDENCE-PRIVILEGE-ATTORNEY-CLIENT-TRUSTS

May 24th, 2022 by Rieders Travis in Evidence

In re Trust Established, 2022 Pa. Super. LEXIS 227 (May 23, 2022) (Murray, J.)  A trustee cannot withhold from any beneficiary documents regarding the management of the trust, including opinions of counsel procured by the trustee to guide the trustee in the administration of the trust, because trust law imposes a duty to make these documents available to the beneficiaries. Consistent with the legal authority, a trustee is privileged from disclosing to beneficiaries or co-trustees’ opinions obtained from, and other communications with, counsel retained for the trustees’ personal protection in the course, or in anticipation, of litigationSee McAleer I, 194 A.3d at 597. The balancing of interests affords the greatest protection to beneficiaries, trustees and counsel. In so holding, we acknowledge the requested documents in this case pertain to the accounting period from March 22, 1994, through December 31, 2019.  Our review discloses no litigation pending against trustees during the accounting period.

Attorney Cliff Rieders

Attorney Cliff RiedersCliff Rieders is a Nationally Board Certified Trial Lawyer practicing personal injury law. A large part of his practice involves multi-district litigation, including cases related to pharmaceuticals, vitamin supplements and medical devices. He is admitted in several state and federal courts, as well as the Supreme Court of the United States. Rieders is the past regional president of the Federal Bar Association and is a life member of the distinguished American Law Institute, which promulgates proposed rules adopted by many state courts. He is a past president of the Pennsylvania Association for Justice, formerly Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association. As a founder of the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority, he served on the Board for 15 years.

Not only has Rieders held many highly esteemed, leadership positions, he authored legislation related to the Patient Safety Authority and the Mcare Act, which governs medical and hospital liability actions in Pennsylvania. He authored texts upon which both practitioners and judges rely, including Pennsylvania Malpractice Laws and Forms, and Financial Responsibility Law Issues in Pennsylvania, the latter governing auto and truck collisions in Pennsylvania. In addition, he wrote several books on the practice of law in Pennsylvania regarding wrongful death and survivor actions, insurance bad faith, legal malpractice claims and worker rights, among others. Rieders also serves as a resource to practitioners as a regular speaker for Celesq, an arm of the world’s largest legal publisher, Thomson Reuters West Publishing.

As recognition of his wide range of contribution to his profession and of his dedication to protecting the rights of his clients, he received numerous awards, among them the George F. Douglas Amicus Curiae Award, the Milton D. Rosenberg Award, the B’nai B’rith Justice Award, and awards of recognition from the Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers. [ Attorney Bio ]

RECENT ARTICLES

 

Article Categories