The Attorney-Client Relationship
It is the duty of the lawyer to keep his clients secrets. A lawyer is bound. If he reveals the client’s secrets with no justifiable reason, his license to practice law may be taken. He will be stripped off his duty and disbarred. So, trust that your attorney will take your secrets to the grave. Otherwise, you can institute a disciplinary action against him.
The Attorney-Client Relationship is a sacred bond. Even if the lawyer is asked to testify by the court, he cannot divulge his client’s secrets. This court also respects that the lawyer cannot breach the Attorney-Client Relationship. This is how powerful this is. If the court can’t even compel your lawyer to talk, neither can his spouse. Even the employees in the law office who come across your information by reason of their duty cannot divulge your information and must keep all matters pertaining to the clients confidential.
Be honest for your own sake
It is inevitable for lawyers to discuss the facts that constitute the case with their clients. It is crucial for your attorney to know the details and surrounding circumstances of the case.
If you want to win your case, you have to help your lawyer. It is normal for him to ask questions so he can devise a plan for you. Failure to know the details will make it difficult for the lawyer to do his or her job in giving advice regarding possible defenses, or advancing your best interests in a deal.
If you withhold something to your lawyer which you thought was unimportant but was later brought up by the adverse party, it can do irreparable damages. It will pave a path for possible arguments the lawyer is unprepared for during the trial and this will undoubtedly blindside the lawyer. This may result in losing the case.
How clients lie to their lawyers
Most lawyers will tell their clients that not telling them truth affects their relationship with the clients and how they work with them. A positive relationship between them can quickly turn into a negative one.
There are two ways a client can “lie” to their attorneys.
The first one is omitting part of a story. If a client leaves out important facts or events when they are narrating the story to their lawyer, this gives the latter a false impression on which way to steer the case and determining the case strength from the beginning.
The second one is the flat-out lying. This is even more dangerous than omission of facts. This kind of lie will almost instantly derail the case.
In conclusion, being honest with your lawyer is as important as well as giving him or her all of the information you can provide regarding the case— whether good or bad. Your lawyer is trained not to judge nor discriminate. Instead, he is trained to give you the best possible defense, or even offense. Whether you are the petitioner or the respondent in a civil case, or the defendant in a criminal case, your lawyer is equipped with the knowledge and training to defend you. Do not blindside your lawyer.
If you feel that you have a hard time opening up, you can visit your psychologist first or arrange for a psychologist to work with your lawyer.
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