The Attorney/Client Privilege is a law that protects communications between attorneys and their clients and keeps them confidential. This privilege encourages openness and honesty between attorneys and their clients because attorneys cannot reveal (and indeed cannot be forced to reveal) attorney/client communications. This privilege becomes especially important in the litigation context because privileged communications, whether written or oral, are not disclosed to the opposing party.
To advise a client properly, an attorney must have a complete knowledge of the facts, including any "bad" or damaging facts. The attorney/client and attorney work-product privileges create a protection of privacy so that University personnel can candidly inform the attorney of all the facts in a confidential and privileged setting.
If you are a member of the Stanford University community, you may contact our office at (650) 723-9611 and ask to receive the "Stanford Legal Office Advisory: Safeguarding The Confidentiality of Attorney-Client Communications and Attorney Work Product" for a more complete discussion of the Attorney/Client Privilege and how to safeguard it. Please note: this memo is only available to internal Stanford community members.