Categories:Real Estate,Tax,UK

Legal advice privilege does not apply to advice given by a professional other than a lawyer

On 23 January 2013, the Supreme Court handed down its judgment in the case of R (on the application of Prudential plc and another) v Special Commissioner of Income Tax (2013) UKSC 1, confirming the Court of Appeal’s decision that legal advice privilege does not apply to legal advice given by a professional other than a lawyer.

Even though this particular case relates to tax advice provided by accountants, the Supreme Court stressed that the principle is wider, and so affects all professionals who, though they are not lawyers, provide legal advice in the course of their business. Professionals in the real estate sector often provide legal advice to clients in their particular area of expertise. It is not always possible for all advice to come from a legal professional, so it is worth taking precautions to reduce the possibility of having to disclose information to the other side, if the matter becomes contentious…

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