3. Attorney-Client privilege is a long-standing legal concept which ensures that communication between an attorney and his/her client is completely private.
In Upjohn vs. the United States, the Supreme Court itself upheld attorney-client privilege as necessary "to encourage full and frank communication between attorneys and their clients and thereby promote broader public interests in the observance of law. . ."
It doesn't matter what you're accused of-- theft. treason. triple homicide. With very limited exceptions, an attorney cannot be compelled to testify against a client, nor can their communications be subpoenaed for evidence.
Yet in a United States Tax Court decision announced on Wednesday, the court dismissed attorney client privilege, stating that:
"When a person puts into issue his subjective intent in deciding how to comply with the law, he may forfeit the privilege afforded attorney-client communications."
In other words, if a person works with legal counsel within the confines of the tax code to legitimately minimize the amount of taxes owed, that communication is no longer protected by attorney-client privilege.
Furthermore, the ruling states that if the individuals do not submit attorney-client documentation as required, then the court would prohibit them from introducing any evidence to demonstrate their innocence.
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